Gift Ideas: The Best Body Products

Gift Ideas: The Best Body Products

A luxe body product is always a great gift for the beauty junkie in your life, as we are more likely to buy a bottle of Olay at the drugstore for ourselves while hoarding our deluxe make up and perfume. A splurge on a body product is a luxury we reserve for gifts and they are always welcome! Here are some great ideas for someone who could use some pampering wrapped up with a bow:

Lancome’s Body Milk Accord 3 Roses is a gorgeous and rich body milk, gently scented with roses and full of skin quenching and beautifying ingredients. Scented with the classic Lancome rose accords and full of rose-y goodness, this is the perfect gift for anyone who loves Lancome, soft roses and body lotion.

Lancome Lait Corps Fraicheur $46

Why not elevate the everyday washing of our hands to something scented & luxe? Jo Malone’s new Blackberry & Bay line has a fresh, clean & unisex scent to wash away the grime of the day and the most stubborn cooking odours. Plus the bottle of hand wash just looks fab on the kitchen or bathroom counter. Buying info here.

Jo Malone Blackberry & Bay $50


Chanel just released a gorgeous cream to accompany their Exclusive line of perfumes, their Fresh Body Creme is “Subtly scented to flatter any fragrance in the LES EXCLUSIFS Collection, this exquisitely soft, light cream envelops the skin with pure luxury. The sumptuous cream is perfect for layering, for the ultimate LES EXCLUSIFS experience. Presented in a beautiful coffret.” So I can’t really say it any better than Chanel- doesn’t that sound gorgeous? My opinion- this cream would work with ANY Chanel perfume. So if you have a Chanel lover in the house, this cream is a must have! Available at select Chanel counters, boutiques and online.

Chanel Fresh Body Creme $130


 It wouldn’t be a luxury body product post with La Mer! If someone you know deserves the ultimate pampering product from head to toe, then why not splurge on the legendary La Mer Body Creme? Full of the famous La Mer goodness, “Like a seaweed wrap in a jar, this rich cream saturates skin in a wave of long-lasting hydration. With the nutrient-rich Miracle Broth™, the heart of La Mer’s profound powers of transformation, it helps break the cycle of dryness and dehydration to give skin a new softness and suppleness. …” Well. Sounds perfect to me! Available at La Mer counters in department stores, Holt Renfrew in Canada.

La Mer Body Creme, starting at $160


Don’t know where to start? Then allow me to suggest the ultimate pampering gift from New York’s premiere fragrance and skincare experts at MIN New York. MIN New York offers a Bespoke Concierge Consultation – a one on one  complimentary session  to select the perfect fragrance, gift(s) or grooming tool for you with house experts Chad Murawczyk or Mindy Yang. A bespoke profile is set up for you during your visit or phone call, and the cost of this session can be redeemed for the product(s) of your choice. Chad & Mindy have made it their mission to search the world for the finest in elegant beauty, grooming and fragrance – you can give the gift of their expertise and a choice of some the most gorgeous products you can lay your hands on. Forget a gift card. This is the gift that keeps on giving.

MIN New York Bespoke Concierge Consultation $95


Next up will be fragrant gift ideas of perfume and cologne…

My No-Fuss Daly Beauty Routine

My No-Fuss Daly Beauty Routine

Even though I am obsessed with beauty, I don’t spend a lot of time getting ready in the morning. Reason? Laziness, perhaps? Also, as time goes by, I find I don’t like the feeling of a lot of stuff on my face. But, like anyone, I like to look polished, bright eyed and as radiant as possible with as little effort as possible. I spend time on my skincare routine, and even though it took me almost 12 minutes to explain it, it really takes less than 5 minutes in the morning and at night to take care of my skin. If anything, as we age we should spend more time on My cosmetic routine in the morning is pretty no-nonsense as well. So- what do I use?

Start with a cleansed and moisturised face. Give your skincare a few minutes to soak in before applying make up- this is a good time to brush your teeth, apply body lotion, brush hair etc. Then:

Concealer: this is a must have for a wide awake and radiant look. Nothing ages you quicker than dark skin around the eyes, and uneven skin tone. Using a concealer brush ( love the one I got from Lancome) I apply my HG concealer, Lancome Effacernes. It is creamy and never creases or settles into lines. It’s also waterproof. I blend it lightly under my eyes and on the sides of my nose.

Eye Make Up Primer: I have oily skin, and truthfully a lot of use have oily eye lids even if the rest of our skin is dry. My hands down HG primer is the incredible Urban Decay Potion Primer  (UDPP) in the slightly yellow toned Eden. I use my fingers to apply a very thin layer on my eyelids- too much gets cake-y and uneven so a light hand is key. Also- a trick: using a small brush, I use a small amount of UDPP on spots/blemishes before applying any concealer on them. It helps extend the life of any concealer you use. It’s the little things, folks. UDPP in Nude is slightly pinker, Greed is a gold shimmer and Sin is a taupe shimmer. I also have and love Sin. Gorgeous.

Powder: I don’t use foundation, but if you do, apply it now! I just use a foundation type of powder, and dust it all over my face. My favourite is Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Base pressed powder. It’s practically invisible yet evens skin tone beautifully. It has sunscreen and doesn’t irritate my oily acne-prone skin. I will weep if this is ever discontinued.

Eyeliner: I am a huge tightlining fan. I tightline along my upper lash line (explanation here) and I use a waterproof pencil or liquid. My fave pencils are Urban Decay 24-7 Glide-On Pencil and Lancome Le Stylo Waterproof. I take tightlining a little further and like to wriggle the pencil between my upper lashes a little bit as well. My favourite liquid liner is L’Oreal Lineur Intense Felt Tip – this stuff is fool proof! When I use this, I don’t waste my time trying to draw a line along my lashes- oh goodness no. I leave that to the pros. And my daughters. What I do with the felt tip liner is dot it between my upper eyelashes- tightly of course, sort of like connecting the dots. I always use black or an almost-black colour, as this shade will make the white of the eyes appear whiter and brighter. Brown tones can emphasise redness in eyes- NOT what we want. What tightlining does is give the illusion of thick eyelashes and opens the eyes beautifully. On a lazy day, that’s all I do. I use Revitalash and tint my lashes so mascara is mostly optional. But for a more finished look, I give a swipe of my favourite mascara, Clinique Lash Power.

Blush & Bronzer: Almost done! Now, I look in the mirror and smile, so I can see the apples of my cheeks. Then I apply a soft dusting of a sheer pink blush right on those babies. My latest love is the gorgeous Bobbi Brown Antigua – it’s called and illuminating bronzer but to my eyes its a sheer cool pink. I LOVE it! The shade is universally flattering, and so sheer that it is practically fail proof. Illuminating? Yes it is glowy, but only in the broadest definition. There is no glitter or glimmer but somehow it adds a glow and I can’t believe it took me until 2 months ago to get it! Then, if I need it, I grab my favourite bronzer (lately also Bobbi Brown Illuminating Bronzer in Aruba but I also love Guerlain Terracotta – read about my fave bronzing powders here ). You don’t have to go all Jersey Shore with bronzer. At this time of year, a tiny bit to add colour to our pale faces is all you need.

Lips: And now apply whatever you want on your lips! After brushing my teeth, I give my lips a good scrub with a facecloth to prep them. I am a balm fanatic so I usually apply my lip balm now and put on gloss or sheer lippy before heading out the door. Almost all my lip colour is in my purse so I do that after my morning routine. My balms du jour are La Mer and, save me from myself, Chanel Lip Care. Cold weather and central heating dry out my lips so I work hard to keep them soft and supple.

S o- TA DA, you are done! Seriously, if this takes you more than 15 minutes, you need to practice and practice to get your time down! It’s easy and a great way to look polished but not make up. And, it’s super easy to glam up your look for parties by adding some shimmery taupe or gold shadow, or a little grey or taupe liner along the bottom lash line, and a dramatic or bright lip colour. I keep a blotting powder in my purse to keep shine at bay, and my YSL Touche Eclat in case I need to hide/highlight anything mid-day. But- that’s it!

Do you have any tips for your morning routine? I’d love to know!

Sweet Scented Memories

Sweet Scented Memories

Scent is our strongest memory trigger. I know my earliest memories involve scent….being a wee sprog and getting into my mum’s make up. Her luxe cake mascara and those 60s lipsticks had a distinct rose scent that has been reproduced in few perfumes, notably Frederic Malle Lipstick Rose and my favourite, L’Artisan Parfumeur Drole de Rose, and a whiff of those perfumes send me reeling back in time. There are those unmistakable seasonal scents as well- you know, when you can “smell”  fall in the air as those summer days get shorter. Or that hopeful whiff of spring as the days get longer after  a long cold winter. The smell of fall takes me back to school days and, another smell, sharpening my HB pencils and the smell of the inside of those wooden desks. So, you get what I mean by scent and memory, right? I’m sure you all have a friend or family member who wears a perfume or cologne that you will forever associate with them, one you likely wouldn’t buy for yourself because it really shares an identity with the wearer.

My step mother (Omi to my daughters) has a signature scent that I have always liked. It’s a beautiful and classic citrus scent, one of those sort of citrus chypre scents that aren’t made just for summer days. They have a rich mossy base, and hail from the 70s when some of my favourite perfumes came to be. Her scent is Lancome “O” de Lancome, a citrus scent launched in 1969. It is one of the more soft and floral citrus scents of the era, my other favourite being Dior Diorella. Diorella has a more mossy and dare I say, carnal, base. And Creed’s sadly discontinued Aubepine Acacia, which is really just a pretender of a citrus, although it has the same feel and vibe of “O” and Diorella, with more of the floral feel of “O”. The Lancome scent is heavily associated with my step mother, and I could never wear it, as much as I love it. It is really just “her”. It’s modern and classic at the same time, and fresh and clean while being warm and feminine. If you haven’t tried it and you enjoy uplifting citrus scents, check it out at the Lancome counter.

O de Lancome has a cool elegant vibe like the 70s fashion Lauren Hutton is sporting here…

So this story is about my daughter Biddy. She was born around 5 weeks too early, and at one point weighed under 5 lbs. Considering she is now taller than I am, it still amazes me to recall how wee she was. So, being so small and sleepy, she had to stay in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) ward for a week after she was born. Yes, I went home without my baby. It was gut wrenching, but I felt blessed to live a few blocks away from the hospital. At the time, my step mother headed up the volunteer auxillary at the hospital where Biddy was staying. I would drive to the hospital to feed Biddy every 2-3 hours. I’d spend most of the day there, feeding and snuggling her. Close physical skin to skin contact helps babies grow so I did lots of that. But one of the most beautiful memories I have would be arriving at the NICU early in the morning. It was the end of January, so it was cold, blustery and dark outside. The nurses (aka saints) would be silently fussing around, feeding and cradling the impossibly tiny babies, and I would sit on a rocking chair, cradling Biddy. But- almost every morning, I noticed when I picked her up, that she had a distinctly non-new-baby scent about her. That she smelled like, well, a lovely citrus perfume. Turns out, my stepmother would often get to the hospital before me, and her first stop was to the NICU. She would settle in to rock and snuggle Biddy before starting her work. There was something so comforting about knowing that even before I arrived, Biddy was getting rocked and sung to, and that she was learning the smells of the people who loved her.

Biddy & her Omis, almost 17 years ago…that’s me looking tired.

To this day, if either of my daughters smell “O” de Lancome, the first thing they say is “oh, that is Omi’s perfume”. And I suspect for them, and for me, it always will be.

Do you have a treasured scent memory?

“O” de Lancome is available at Lancome counters. There are several newer flanker releases of the original, but my favourite will always be just “O” de Lancome….

Soft Skin That Smells Like Roses- Lancôme Accord 3 Roses Lait Corps Fraîcheur

Soft Skin That Smells Like Roses- Lancôme Accord 3 Roses Lait Corps Fraîcheur

It was only a matter of time before I caved and spent $45 on the rose body milk Lancôme released this past summer, Lancôme Accord 3 Roses Lait Corps Fraîcheur. I’ve tried it a few times, told myself I didn’t need it (eyes overflowing shelf of body lotions and potions) and resisted. I caved yesterday and am happy I did. What is it? It’s a beautiful and rich body milk, full of Lancome’s rose goodness. Lancôme uses the beautiful rose as a moisturizing benefit in most of their products, as well as a gentle scent. Just like violet is the signature note in Guerlain cosmetics, rose is the Lancôme signature.

Lancôme Lait Corps Fraîcheur uses what Lancôme calls their “3 rose harmony”…”skin recovers suppleness like the delicate touch of a rose petal, enveloped with dewdrops”. Works for me! It contains Rosa Centifolia which soothes skin, Rosa Gallica which has antioxidant properties to protect skin daily, and Rosa Canina which is rich in essential fatty acids to moisturize skin. I’m already a big believer in the wonderful properties of rose and how it helps our skin and this body milk is no exception. It has a gorgeous creamy texture and literally melts into the skin. The scent is soft and delicate, and never overwhelms. That said, if you don’t like the scent of rose, this is probably not the product for you. However, if you dislike strong or sour rose notes, give this a try. It is so gentle with a creamy sweet under tone. It is delicious, frankly. And it also makes you feel good. The scent of rose has a calming and mood lifting effect, and has even been said to have anti-depressant benefits. So Lancôme Lait Corps Fraîcheur is perfect as a pick me up when applied in the morning, and is also soothing at bedtime. I use it at morning and night! But, I am crazy about moisturizing…

Me during my rose period.

The moisturizing benefits of this body milk are fantastic. As mentioned, it melts into the skin beautifully and leaves soft moist and dewy skin behind. I ALWAYS read the ingredient list on beauty products before I buy. Always. I don’t like silicone heavy products, as they give a false sense of smooth and silky and don’t actually offer any moisturizing properties. So Lancôme Lait Corps Fraîcheur has some silicone in it, but is way down the ingredient list, which means it is likely there for slip and texture more than anything else. I love the way Lancôme Lait Corps Fraîcheur smells, and I love the way it makes my skin feel. Verdict? Love.

Tan Your Face Beautifully

Disclaimer- there is no Jersey Shore-esque orange Oompa Loompa tans in my self tanning world. But, if you like a soft healthy glow that says “I love walks in the sunshine and don’t live in a dark basement” then we’re on the same page. I will devote a few posts to self tanners as there are so many, and, some of us need different formulas for our faces and our bodies. Today, I will share 2 of my favourite facial tanning options. As I have shared often, I have oily acne prone skin that is also over 40 so my skincare and cosmetic options often work for aging AND younger skin. With this in mind, I am not a fan of multi-tasking skincare for the face. I have a moisturizer I love and I have a sunscreen/primer I love . I don’t want extra anything in my self-tanner. Just make me glow, baby, and don’t smell too weird and make me break out. For this reason I really like gel or mousse formulations- easy to apply, sink in quickly and don’t leave me oily…
Lancome Flash Bronzer Gel for Face: This is the one I have been using the longest and always go back to after trying others. One thing to know about this is a little goes a long way. It would be nice if it offered a bit of instant colour so you knew exactly where it was going but once you get the hang of it it is just perfect, it gives the right amount of glow and colour without an orange look. I use a dime sized or smaller amount and carefully blend down my throat and along my hairline. Then, my magic self tanner tip. I use a (dark) face cloth that is damp, and I wipe thoroughly my eyebrows, around my mouth and along my hairline. That is where you may get a bit too dark- these are areas that usually don’t get more tan than the rest of your face and are a dead Can-Tan giveaway if you don’t wipe them clean right away. I like to do this right after washing my face in the morning and give myself around 15-20 minutes before applying make up. I like as little as possible on my skin at  nighttime so I don’t self tan before bed. This one has very little of the weird baking bread smell that is the bane of most self tanners and what little scent it has dissipates quickly.
Clarins Instant Smooth Self Tanning: I received a couple samples of this from my wonderful Shoppers Drug Mart Cosmetic Fairies. Seriously- some of the new giant Shoppers rival Sephora and the SAs there get non stop product knowledge for the latest and greatest stuff. They are an invaluable resource so use them! They also know that if you try you may buy and if you are really interested in something new, they usually have samples. Ask and ye shall receive! I was looking at the Clarins Self Tan line as the wise and beautiful Victoria from EauMG had recommended the Liquid Bronze Self Tanning as one of the best self tanners out there. Online reviews from EVERYWHERE back this claim up. But the Instant Smooth is new and I was keen to try it. Well, I have to say, I love it. Yes it is a bit silicone-y, but a teensy bit goes a long way, it shows a light bronze tone immediately upon application, and the self tanning is so subtle and perfect it is almost goof-proof. Very little scent and instant gratification! I still plan to try the Liquid Self Bronze as I need something for my legs and if it works on face & body then that is a win for me!
I’d be remiss in not mentioning my all time Holy Grail self tanner, St Tropez Mousse. There is nothing better than this, it shows instantly, gives a gorgeous glow, no oil or weird smell and can be used on body and face. My issue is how hard it is to find in Canada. I buy it if I see it in the US but since I have the others in my cabinet I haven’t really bothered looking. Can someone in Ottawa please carry St Tropez???
What are your fave self tanners? Share the wealth!
This is why we wipe around our lips….
And this, Xtina, is NOT a good colour match for you…

Random Beautiful Thoughts

Random Beautiful Thoughts

Music ~ As a long time fan of the musical weirdness that was Roxy Music and is Bryan Ferry I was keen to hear Olympia. His latest release features some pretty cool dudes including Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood, Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, just to name a few. But it is the spooky & ethereal Brian Eno rejoining that adds that Roxy magic, especially evident on Tender is The Night. I feel like this song is…humid and dense, if that makes sense…

Speaking of a little weirdness (I mean this in the best way) how about a little Jonsi (from Sigur Ros) and the oh so pretty Go, Do

Go sing, too loud

Make your voice break- sing it out

Go scream, do shout

Make an earthquake

… pretty, right?


Book ~ Just finished Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom and I loved it. I still love him for his famous Oprah dissing ( I am not a believer in The Church of Oprah) and for the weird Franzenfreude that arose as a result of his great reviews. Sour grapes much? Anyways…his books make me want to have a pencil nearby when I’m reading so I can underline phrases that blow my mind. Sometimes I read them out loud… a few times. Anyone who grew up in the 70s/80s and who had even a modicum of family dysfunction needs to read Jonathan Franzen. The Corrections spoke to my generation and moved me in unexpected ways. Freedom reminded me of how politics were so important to my parents and how they shaped my beliefs. It also reinforced (in my humble opinion) how important it is to take responsibility for your parenting and for your children. There is a weird over-protective/let-kids-make-the-important-choices dichotomy going on these days. Parents who cry “poor me” and act like martyrs while not letting their kids walk anywhere on their own or take responsibility for their bad behavior. It’s like a reversal of what parenting should be….”in my humble opinion”… Freedom is not just about parenting by any chance…but that is one of the things I took away from it.


Food ~ Well, post holidays I am happy to purge my system of chocolate and celebratory dinners with a normal eating routine. It doesn’t take long to feel energized and healthy again when pounds of chocolate, butter and champagne are eliminated (ok…reduced…) from the diet. During these cold days, curries are among my favourite dishes and my Lalah’s Curry Powder and Patak’s curry paste get a real workout. One of my favourite vegetarian dishes is Spicy Rice and Lentils. It doesn’t use curry but has lots of warmth and yumminess and was always a favourite with my daughter and her friends, even when they were young. Hey, it doesn’t have to be gross chicken fingers and frozen fries! 


Fashion ~ Ah, let us thank the fashion gods for the big circle scarf, shall we? I have a big thick wooly black one from Urban Outfitters that I have been living in during our cold snap. It’s a scarf, a hat, and a neck warmer. A win for me! Also, Canadian chain Aritzia has a line called TNA that makes super cozy parkas that are lined with a faux fur. Mine is blue grey military style and with the hood up & my circle scarf wrapped around my neck you can colour me cozy. What I want- did anyone else notice Natalie Portman’s character in Black Swan was constantly wearing what looked like cashemere sweatpants and hoodies? All in pale greys, blushes and cream colours! Cozy stuff for lounging around the house are pretty much my favourite items and these look like the ultimate. I can pretend to be a ballerina 😉
this is how I imagine my make up :)


Cosmetic du Jour ~ For some reason I am embracing black eyeliner on my upper and lower waterlines. It looks sexy and smoky, yet subtle and Lancome Le Stylo Waterproof pencil in Black stays put. Loving me some Bobbi Brown right now. Her award winning Long Wear Cream Shadow in Cement is my daily go-to neutral eye shadow these days, and her Pot Rouge for Lips and Cheeks in the pretty and cheery Pale Pink is giving me a blush. Dust it all over with some Illuminating Bronzing Powder in the pale golden bronze colour of Aruba and I look like I am happily surviving winter with a healthy glow.


Perfume du Moment ~  I have been craving warmth and the smells that come when the earth is alive, ie flowers, grass, trees and the way everything smells when the sun shines on it. You know, when it’s. Not. Winter. A little spritz of Annick Goutal Songes or Comptoir Sud Pacifique Aloha Tiare gives me a “warm sultry tropical night walking under fragrant flowers” in a bottle and just make me happy. I think it makes people around me happy too, as when I wear either of these I am constantly hearing “Mmmm what are you wearing, you smell so good”. Works for me! A few sprays of Jo Malone Vintage Gardenia at bedtime guarantees sweet dreams. This white floral blend has soft and gentle notes of cardamom that adds a warming element, perfect for a cold and blustery night

Get Beautiful in 15 Minutes or Less….

Get Beautiful in 15 Minutes or Less….


As much as I love makeup and all things beauty & cosmetic related, I am not into a heavy, made up look. At all. As I get older, the “less is more” theory becomes more relevant. If I have a special night out, I can add a little more drama with a slightly darker eye and some color on my lips, but for my daily Daly (lol) look, I keep it pretty simple. Long wearing is also key for my day-to –day cosmetics; I don’t have the time or desire to tote a large make up bag full of everything I need around in my purse. There is enough in there to sink a ship already…. if you read my Top 5 in my Purse post, you know that I stick to the basics. I also have oily skin so, make up, if not long wearing, tends to slip away and disappear before lunch. The descriptions may seem detailed and long winded, but trust me, get the hang of this routine and you’re out the door in minutes. So here we go. Get ready quickly, and look good all day. …
Tinted Moisturizer
I am not, and have never been, a foundation gal. On the days when I feel a little blotchy or pale, a little TM is all it takes to give my face the dewy look of an 18 year old. LOL, okay, not quite, but you know what I mean. I have two favourites- a high end product and a drugstore product. I love them both and actually alternate depending on my mood. High end- Dermalogica Sheer Tint Moisture spf 15. Incredible, sheer, matte and long lasting, I use the medium tone all year round. Makes me look healthy in the winter, blends with the light tan I inevitably get in the summer. Drugstore- Olay Totally Effects UV Moisturizer + Touch of Foundation . This one is actually fantastic, and it adds a little more moisture to my face in drier weather, ie winter when the central heat sucks every bit of moisture out of everything. I have been an Olay lover for years and this product does not disappoint. The magic Total Effects ingredients have won over users in blind tests involving super high end creams (hello La Mer….) since it was released and the tinted version is fantastic. The anti aging ingredients offer a light exfoliation, which helps keep oil at bay as well as smoothing out wrinkles. Not that I have any…
This is a KEY product for me. Probably the one thing I’d use if (HORRORS) I was asked to choose the one thing I could not be without. You can go from tired and old to perky and young in a minute with the right concealer. And the only one, as far as I am concerned, is Lancome Effacernes Waterproof Protective Concealer . This product was recommended to me years ago by a make up artist at a Lancome counter. I went to buy Lancome waterproof mascara as I was going to a wedding (preparing for tears…) and she showed me Effacernes. WOW. This stuff is truly *Holy Grail material and I could never be without it. It is creamy and moisturizing while also having a matte finish. I use it under my eyes and on my eyelids, as it says it’s for under eye area. But I use a brush and lightly dab “spots” (ok, pimples) and very lightly dab it on the sides of my nose. A light dusting of powder on top and it stays put. As we age, that area gets red/darker and you would be shocked at how your face changes when you lighten the sides of your nose. Worth testing first, as a waterproof product may irritate a supersensitive skin. But I guarantee if this works for you, you will never be without it. A huge selection of color choices makes matching your skin tone exactly easy peasey. No more dark circles, the color will not settle into lines and will last for hours.
Bronzer &/or Blush
A touch of color is essential to a complete & healthy look. I don’t always wear both but sometimes a bit of blush and a light dusting of bronzer give me the pick-me-up that I need. You know those days – tired, run down and pale – without a good look and I am a big believer in “live it- be it” so sometimes I hope to psych myself out with a pretend glow. My number one blush is Benefit Benetint which is a liquid tint originally created, according Benefit’s site, “for an exotic dancer in the 1970s”…interesting. It is sheer, easy to apply and the perfect blushing cheek tone that lasts almost all day. I use few drops on my lips too! It also comes in a handy little package paired with lip gloss that is another perfect purse item (now that’s another Top 5 post!). My number one bronzer is the classic Guerlain Terracotta. My beautiful friend Heidi always looks so lovely & effortlessly bronzed- years ago I asked her what she used & she said Terracotta. Perfection! I had used it eons ago and now would never be without it. I use the lightest formula (01, sometimes called Blonde), which is foolproof. The Guerlain or Sephora rep can help you find your perfect shade. Using a nice big poufy brush giving yourself a light , even dusting all over the face can take you from tired to tan in an instant.
Eyeshadow & Primer
I cannot believe there was a time that I ever did not use Urban Decay Potion Primer which is basically the most incredible thing. Ever. It is a neutral coloured eye lid primer, to be used before you apply your eye make up. Using the Original formula, very lightly applied (a little goes a long way and too much is sticky) UDPP will make your eye make up last until you remove it. This could be overnight if you are a bad girl and don’t wash your make up off (like my daughters). Tsk tsk! They have 3 formulas, but the slightly shimmery Champagne toned Sin is a lovely colour on it’s own for pretty natural look. Then I swipe a little taupe eye shadow on my brow bone for depth. My faves are MAC Quarry and Omega- there are swatches on this page…just scroll down on Tempatalia to view. They are my Holy Grail taupe/natural shadows as they perfectly enhance the eye and give your lids some depth, rather than screaming, “Look at me I’m wearing purple and green eye shadow!”
Eyeliner Trick
This is a great little trick to add some depth to your lash line and open your eyes without looking like you are wearing any make up. As a blonde, this is something that really helps but it really works for anyone. Again, my desire to remain relatively low maintenance & my laziness dictates that this be a long wearing look. For this purpose I find the felt tip style is perfect- foolproof and easy to use. My personal favourite is L’Oreal Lineur Intense Felt Tip Liquid Eyeliner . This stuff lasts until you remove it, comes in an array of colours to suit anyone and the product goes a long way as well. That and it is around $10 at the drugstore- also fabulous. So, my trick. After applying concealer and my primer (UDPP) and letting them set, I apply the liner. I take the tip and gently dot all along my upper lash line- not above the lashes but IN the lash line. And by dot, I mean connect the dots. It may seem a little awkward at first but I can do each eye in around 30 seconds now. I start at the outer corner and work my way in and as I approach the other end of my lid, I make the dots a bit smaller until they disappear/taper off. Give it a minute to dry and you have a lash line that looks defined and subtle. Add a brush of mascara and you look bright eyed and wide-awake. My day-to-day fave color is the brown, which works well with my medium-fair colouring and hazel eyes, but they have a great black that I will use for a more dramatic look. I have even wanted to try the grey, so stay tuned….
Everyone has their favourite powder- and it is essential for setting your make up after application. A light dusting of powder on your lashes before mascara will also help it adhere and again improve longevity.  I alternate two formulas. MAC Studio Fix, a matte powder foundation, which offers some extra coverage when I want it. A little goes a long way so a light hand is helpful with this. My day to day powder is Guerlain Meteorites Poudre des Perles I will admit a love and obsession with the Guerlain Meteorites line- very finely milled  and violet scented…. But frankly,  as long as it matches your skin, is finely milled and you apply it with a nice poufy brush (I have many- for powder, blush, bronzer…) then stick with the powder that works for you.
Everyone has their favourite mascara…some are high end and some swear by drugstore deals. My personal preference is for lengthening mascara that does not look thick or clumpy and it has to be in a waterproof formula. Non-waterproof ends up as black circles under my eyes in a few hours. Ah that oily skin. And its nice to know I can rub or scratch my eye without making a mess. At any rate, so far I have yet to find a High End mascara that works as well as L’Oreal Voluminous Waterproof Mascara in black. Waterproof formulas tend to dry out a bit quicker than non waterproof versions so I also feel a bit better replacing a $10 mascara more often than, say, a $30 mascara. But in the end, for me, it is about performance and L’Oreal Voluminous lengthens and holds a curl beautifully. Two coats on my top lashes and I’m out the door…
The End


* Holy Grail: A very desired object or outcome that borders on a sacred quest