Thursday, June 4, 2015

CAILYN Cosmetics Pure Lust Extreme Matte

The CAILYN Cosmetics Pure Lust Extreme Matte is probably my favourite product I received in May's Epsy makeup bag The application goes on smoothly and you don't have to put a lot on your lips. It last so long and once it's dried on your lips, it won't leave any marks! I also LOVE the colour, so that's an added bonus, as I wear it almost everyday!

Monday, April 27, 2015

The thing about being an introvert...

  1. Introverts are people who primarily look inward, paying close attention to their thoughts and emotions. It's not that they are incapable of paying attention to what is going on around them, it's just that their inner world is much more stimulating and rewarding to them. - Link
A few years ago, I self-diagnosed myself as being an introvert and I began reading up about other introverted people: how to deal with them, how to deal with being one, what does if feel like to be an introvert, what are the signs... The moment I learned about what introversion was, it was as if a piece of the puzzle that I am was finally put in place. Introversion explained so much about the things that I did and about how I reacted to different situations.

I often get told by other people that they wish they were more like  me: reserved, soft spoken, calm, analytic, political in the way I choose my words, etc. It's so strange hearing these things because all of my life, I have fought against all of those characteristics. I have always wished I was a bit more loud, a bit more energetic and charismatic,  a bit more of "the life of the party". To me, being the way I am was not as great as some of those people think.

So what does it feel like to be an introvert? Well I can't speak for anyone else here, but here a the gist of how I experience it.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Hey Honey Facial Serum

     I was quite excited about trying out this Hey Honey serum, as I'm in search of the perfect facial serum to add to my morning beauty routine. 
     At first, I did not expect the colour of the serum; for some reason, I was expecting clear to white substance, but the yellow really took me by surprise. Then, when I thought about the Honey aspect of it, it made perfect sense! I washed and cleaned my face before rubbing the Hey Honey product. 

     Right away, I very much liked it as it felt really light on my face. It was quick absorbent, so my face didn't look shiny too long. Also, my face tends to go a bit dry in the cold weather, especially on my chin and around my nose, but I found that the day I tried the Honey Silk Facial Serum, it didn't. I am definitely going to keep on trying the product every morning to see if it does help keep my skin hydrated. All in all, it's probably the best facial serum I have tried so far! 

     For more information on the product, visit the brand's page here.

Yours truly, Bien la vôtre

Monday, April 20, 2015

My first ipsy bag

   I'm a sucker for beauty boxes, there is no doubt about it. I've tried out a few boxes and have always been pleasantly surprised by them. So when I saw on Facebook that many of my friends were posting links to ipsy, I decided to try it out. 

     The whole process of signing up and "getting off the wait list" was actually almost a deal breaker for me. I was required to post links on Facebook, send 10 invites to people through Facebook messenger, like Instragram and Youtube accounts... This was all about social media and getting the word about ipsy out there. However, I sucked it up and did everything I had to do to get my first box as soon as possible (including sending an apologetic message with my invites explaining to my friends that they didn't actually have to do or read anything). 

     And then came the waiting process. I joined ipsy around this time last month, but they didn't actually take my payment until a couple weeks later. For the past two weeks, I kept an eye on my profile to figure out when I'd be getting my package, but only kept seeing other people posting pictures of their products that they had already received. And then, I was notified of which products I'd actually be getting, so that completely killed the surprise for me. However, after weeks and weeks of waiting, I finally got that notification telling me that there was a package for me at the post office.

     At first, I was a bit put off by the packaging. Being an avid lover of monthly beauty boxes, I always look forward to the nice box (that I can then keep afterwards as storage) with all the brand new beauty products inside. However, when I first saw the pink bubble wrapper bag, I thought there had been a mistake. However, upon looking inside, I realised it was my ipsy products. The makeup bag and products themselves are really nice and I especially love the perfume, but the experience so far had not been what I was expecting. After getting over the packaging issue however, I was able to appreciate fully this month's loot. 

     So this month's theme was Beautiful Bohemian. I received a full size, lovely shade of blush in Tango  by HIKARI. I then got a divine eau de parfum in Sophisticated & Sensual  by Aromachology. Also included was a cheeky eyeshadow in Flirty from the Nude Dude collection by theBalm. Finally, I also got a lipgloss from Starlooks in Cuddle and a facial serum by hey honey.

     All together, despite the few minor issues, I still really did enjoy this month's beauty products. Next month, I'll simply have to be a bit more patient and not go on my profile so as to not find out which products I will receive next.

     If you're interested in joining ipsy,click on this link. They currently only ship to Canada and the U.S., but they might ship outside of those regions later on.

     Are you an ipsy client? What are your thoughts on the whole joining process and the products you receive?

Yours truly, Bien la vôtre,

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Rosy cheeks and sunny days

I am so incredibly happy to announce that Spring is finally here! The last week or so has simply been amazing with the nice, sunny and warm weather that has been bestowed upon us. At long last, Mother Nature seems to have had gotten over her issue that she seemed to have with us, eastern Canadian folks. The snow is melting and morals are rising. And to make things even better, I have finally worn a dress without freezing my legs off, so I believe it's cause for a celebration!

Today, I was in the mood for a light and fresh look so I decided to skip my usual black liquid eyeliner in favour of a softer brown crayon eyeliner by NYC in 925 Sable. With barely there eyeshadow by Maybelline in The Nudes, and a nice light coat of mascara by bellápierre cosmetics (that I have also received in full size from a LIB beauty box!), I was able to give my eyes a fresh and awake look. Then for a bit of "fard à joue", I used my favourite one from Soap & Glory called Love at First Blush in Pink, Pop & Pearl. What I love about this particular blush is the small bit of shimmer to it. When it goes on your cheeks, it's very subtle so it illuminates your cheekbones instead of giving them that fake, matte pink look that sometimes happens.

All in all, I was very please with my makeup today. It truly reflected the light, airy feeling you get when going outside, where it's finally starting to look and feel like Spring. Now, maybe with more encouragement, Summer will get here even faster!

Yours truly, Bien la vôtre,

NYC Kohl crayon in 925 Sable
Eyeshadow base by Soap & Glory... I can't do my eyes without it!
Eyeshadow by Maybelline New York
Mascara I received in my LIB beauty box. I absolutely love it! It's so light, perfect for a more natural look.
I am obsessed with Soap & Glory makeup!
Perfect shimmer blush!

Saturday, April 11, 2015


I simply wanted to take a quick moment to thank you. I don't know who you are, where you're from, but thank you! Yes you. Thank you for taking the time to visit my blog. Yesterday, I have hit a major milestone, which was to have over 1000 views in one day. To some, this might not seem like a lot, but for me it's a huge deal considering that when I first started writing I would go days without anyone coming for a visit.

It's also a big deal because I rarely ever go out and talk about my blog or even post my url anywhere, so I'm not big on promoting my own work. However, somehow, more than 1000 of you found your way over and many keep returning. That is why I dedicate this small post to each one of you. Just know that I greatly appreciate every singly one of you. And even if you only stopped by shortly and don't ever plan on coming back, thanks for the visit.

Your truly, Bien la vôtre,

Thursday, April 9, 2015

LOLA make up by Perse

Back when I was in London, I had ordered a few beauty boxes from Latest in Beauty and I was completely blown away by them. I am actually so sad that they don't ship anywhere else but inside the UK because they sent me THE best beauty boxes I have ever experienced. They were full of amazing beauty products, many of which were full sized. Amongst them was this little gem of a nail varnish. I am one of those unfortunate people that simply cannot keep their nail colour on. Within a day or so, it will get chipped and if I'm especially stressed that day, it will get picked off.

I fell in love with this LOLA nail colour when it survived two days without chipping. By the third day, I was sold. Plus I'm just loving this colour! Being a dark gray but not quite black, I feel like it's the perfect shade to appear chic without going gothic.

Have you ever used this brand of nail varnish? What were your thoughts?

Yours truly, Bien la vôtre,

Friday, April 3, 2015

The power of a nature walk

I've been back in Canada for about two weeks, and what a two weeks it has been.

A day after my return, I was lucky enough to have been offered a three week teaching job, so I am so incredibly grateful for that. But between working full-time while also looking for a second job for a more secure income and ragging a war against a cold, as well as dealing with missing my fiancé so much, I have also been going back an forth between my parents' and brother's houses since I don't have an income stable enough for an apartment just yet. So as you can imagine, it has been a stressful two weeks where I am constantly surrounded by people. And for an introvert such as myself, while I appreciate my family for helping me so much, it can get quite tiring and energy consuming.

Enter nature.

Today, I finally mustered up enough energy to finally go outside for a walk. With the sun out and the temperature at a high of 10 degrees, it would have been a sin to stay cooped up inside all day. Even thought it was a simple 30 minute walk, it was exactly what I needed. The sound of only my footsteps and the gentle wind lazily passing me by had such a calming and soothing affect. The sun reflecting on the snow made everything so much brighter and beautiful. I finally felt like I was regaining my sanity bit by bit with every step I took and started feeling like myself again.

I'm so happy I finally went for a walk today and I plan on going again every single day. I plan on taking some "Martine time" where I can go outside and let go of everything else that is stressing me in my life; it will all still be there when I come back. I plan on not even bringing my earphones, so that the only music I can listen to is the sound of my footsteps softly thumping on the pavement or crunching in the snow.

I highly recommend anyone to do the same. Even if you live in a city, find a nearby park where you can go walk around; getting away from the city noises can do wonders for a person's well being! I find that nature has that affect on us. Sometimes when we're so busy stressing over things, that most of the time we have no control over, we tend to forget that nature is out there as gentle, as peaceful and as calming as ever. We forget that ultimately, we came from there but have lost touch with it.

Yours truly, Bien la votre,

Broke my new pair of sunglasses already, so had to dig up these old ones!

Wanted to go for a walk on the snow... but sank knee-deep in it!

There is beauty everywhere... even in old rusty abandoned mailboxes

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Coming out of a LDR (Long Distance Relationship) stronger than ever

     Disclaimer: I am in no way an expert in relationships. What works for my relationship may not for yours. However, I don't know about all of you out there in a LDR, but I know reading about other people in the same situation and how they deal with it helps me a lot. It allows me to see past the loneliness and the waiting game, and it enables me to focus on the big picture, which is the moment I'll finally be able to be with my man forever.

     My fiancé and I are now on our third session apart. I know... compared to many other people out there, it's not the worst. It is only a couple months at a time, but regardless of how much time being apart lasts, every LDR have that one thing in common: being appart sucks. Big Time. You'd think that it would get easier every time, but it doesn't. It actually feels like it's doing the complete opposite. Every time, the loneliness and the missing of each other only get worst and worst.

     This is why I thought about writing this post: this is more of a therapeutic list making than an advise column, but if it can help any of you get through your waiting time until you next see your hunny, then all the better.

Let your someone special know about the small things
The first time we time we were apart, Shane and I would only Skype every other day because we felt like we had nothing "important" to say. I think what happened was that we felt like we only needed to share the big things going on in our lives. However, after the second time we spent apart, we started talking about the small, "unimportant" things because that's what we would do when we were around. one another. I now sometimes send him pictures of random things such as the food I'm be eating, tell him funny things I witnessed, send him little videos of my godson, etc... Somehow, it's these little "unimportant" moments that keeps us closer and that makes the distance feel smaller.

Keep the romance alive
Just because you can't physically touch, hug and kiss each other doesn't mean you can't be romantic. This is the perfect opportunity to come out of your shell! Write little love letters, send postcards sprayed with perfume, send funny little videos, etc. Nothing is too corny! I'll admit that I have made a lip sync video a few months back, and while it may make some people vomit from the corniness, I'm still quite proud of the final product. It's just a nice, creative way of letting your someone special that they're on your mind.

Care packages
Since we had to spend last Christmas apart, I sent Shane a care package about a month before which was loosely based on advent calendars. Included was a letter with loads of cheesy and corny passages, as well as the rules for how the package worked. Basically I had created a little countdown calendar that had an activity for Shane to do each day. The activities varied from day to day and included stuff like "go out with the lads tonight and have fun!", "send me a video of your sexy dance", "tell me 5 reasons why you love me", etc. And then for the last ten days before we were to be reunited, he had a small daily gift to open. The gifts themselves were small and nothing fancy, but they were representations of little inside jokes and a lot of thought were put into them, which made them that much more special.

Keep busy
This is basically a given, but I cannot stress this enough. Keep yourself busy! I used to work two jobs so that the days would fly by! I spent extra time with my nieces and nephews, taking them out skating, to the movies, etc. I made plans with friends and colleagues outside of work. My worst enemy is getting bored. That's when my mind starts turning and thinking, and rethink and then thinking some more. And then the hours drag and days seem to be never ending! I don't advise you to burn yourselves out, but even if it means taking up an extra hobby, do it! It's so easy to stay in bed in your pyjamas, watching Netflix and eating junk food. Instead, go out, socialise, take a new class, anything to simply get yourself out of the house.

Stay positive
Finally, keep remembering about the big picture. At the moment, if might feel like you haven't seen your other half in ages and that your reunion date is forever away. But keep in mind that this won't be forever. Eventually, you'll be able to be together for good. This lesson is actually brought on by Shane who keeps reminding me of this. He keeps telling me that this is only temporary and there will come the day where we won't have to be apart anymore and that all of this will be worth it. We simply need to keep looking at what's ahead of us, which is a lifelong time of happiness.

For all of you out there that are living the same situation, what else do you do to make the waiting and the distance easier?

Now, I'm actually unsure about whether or not I should include the video I was taking about earlier, but why not? As you will see, it's cheesy to the point of being cringy, but it was made out of love, which is kind of the point. It might also inspire you to made a special video for your own partner... either that or it will inspire to never make one! Haha! Anyways, do enjoy!

Yours truly, Bien la vôtre,

Sunday, March 22, 2015

When your dream turn out to be not so dreamy

     All my life, I have had one ultimate goal: to live in Europe. Originally, I was going to move to Paris, have a cool job in the fashion world and live happily ever after. However, as I got older things changed. I travelled to Ireland and ended loving it so much that I moved there instead of Paris. Also, I ended up studying to be a teacher, so that became the career I wanted to practice.

     In November 2014, I was offered the opportunity of my dreams: teaching in England. As you can see, it ticked all the boxes of my lifelong goal. So I embarked on this new adventure that was to move to East London and become a Year 4 classroom teacher. It should have been the happiest time of my life, I finally had everything I ever wanted. And yet, it wasn't...

     I can't put my finger on what exactly went wrong. It wasn't really one big thing, it was more like an accumulation of many smaller things. First, the area we lived in was scary. There was not one time that Shane let me walk in my own due to the dodgy feeling of the place. And then, teaching in the English system wasn't what I had expected at all. It was simply so different than what I was used to and while that was kind of the poing (I had actively worked to teach in a different country!), I did not expect to feel so put out by it and to become so doubtful and unsure of my own teaching skills. While there are so many different things done that I will incorporate in my future classroom, many other things went against how I think teaching should be done, to the point where I was questioning whether or not I wanted to continue being a teacher.

     Before we had moved to England, Shane and I said that if either one of was were unhappy, we'd go back home and figure out a new plan. So with everything going the way it was, we came to the conclusion that the both of us were unhappy. This brought on the decision that our time in England had already come to an end.

     This must have been one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make, because I had to decide whether or not to give up on my dream. I felt like a failure for giving up. I was afraid of what others would think of me. Even after I gave my notice of resignation to the school, it took me so long to actually tell people about it because I felt ashamed.

     But then, after a lot of thinking (and with the help of my ever-so-smart fiancé!), I was finally able to come to the conclusion that all of that doesn't matter. Not what others think and not any of those little voices in my head telling me I was a failure. What mattered was not the fact that I was unable to stay in England until the end of the school year, but rather that I tried. And because I tried, I will never have to ask myself "what if...".

     Sometimes, things don't turn out the way we planned, or wanted, or hoped. Sometimes, dreams are meant to be just that... dreams. Unfortunately, when dreams come true, there is always a chance that the reality of it will just not be what you expected. Sadly, my dream vision of teaching in Europe did not reflect the reality of it. Although I am quite sad that teaching in England didn't work out, at least I am proud that I was brave enough to try it. I tried teaching and living in the UK and it was an experiment, one that has taught me so much about myself on a personal and professional level. So really, it wasn't a failure but rather a success, would't you say?

Yours truly,
Bien la vôtre,

Friday, March 20, 2015

Dedicated to all the friendships out there

Isn't love just the greatest? Is there really anything that feels better than loving someone and being loved in return? No wonder hundreds of artists, poets, writers and songwriters have spent centuries trying to depict it. And what's even better about it, it's that it's not a feeling that is specifically for just one person. Indeed, love is more than just a romantic feeling. It's a feeling also reserved for family and friends, which brought me to today's subject: friendship.

I believe that everyone should have that one person who, no matter how long it has been since you've last seen each other, can pick up with you right where you left off. I am one of those lucky enough to have that type of friendship. A friendship that isn't based on the amount of years that you've both known each other, or which friends or interests you have in common, but rather on a genuine connection that runs deep in the core of your being. 

My best friend, Mireille, whom I have known for roughly twelve years now, is that one kindred spirit that I am fortunate enough to have in my life. Wherever she goes she attracts friends, positivity and laughter. She is the bubbliest, softest, most caring person I know and I could not imagine my life without her in it. 

In the summer of 2012, Mireille and I decided to go backpacking across Europe, which was a life changing experience in more ways than I could ever imagine. While some might be cautious about travelling with their friend out of fear of discovering traits that would have best been kept in the dark, travelling with Mireille was the best decision I could ever have taken. She showed me how to be more spontaneous and got me to come out of my shell; she helped me become the woman I am today. Because of her, I discovered my love of Ireland and helped me achieve my life long dream of moving to Europe. She encouraged me to follow my dreams and to not be afraid of trying new things. She shared with me her gift of not always taking yourself so seriously and of living life to the fullest. But perhaps the biggest gift she has ever given me was to introduce me to another friend... Who eventually became my fiancé.  

So many incredibly good things in my life, I owe to this fabulous lady, this charming, funny, beautiful woman. So Mireille, I do believe you are one of my soul mates and I am the luckiest gal in the world to have you in my life.

Amsterdam, Netherlands
Paris, France
Venice, Italy
Pisa, Italy
Pompei, Italy
Somewhere, Ireland
Wicklow, Ireland
Sligo, Ireland

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Miss Selfridge - Paisley Neon Scarf

Yesterday was my last day teaching in England. While the day was very much bitter sweet, I did leave the school feeling relieved and positive about my decision to go back home to Canada. If there is one important lesson that I have learned from this experience, it's to always follow your gut feeling. I have always prized myself on the fact that I do know myself well enough that I quick to realise when something will work out or not and I have always trusted that feeling. I truly believe that it's for that reason that I can confidently say that so far, I have lived a life of no regrets. Every decision I have made has always been made in order to achieve true happiness and really, with that frame of mind, how can I go wrong?

I have never been good at goodbyes and yesterday was no different. As the end of the day came closer and closer, I could feel my heartbeat race quicker and quicker as I dreaded the round of goodbyes I would have to go through. The staff I have had the chance to work with have been so amazing, friendly and inviting. I have truly learned a lot from them and the past couple months in their company have opened my eyes to different ways of teaching.

One person that has truly stood out was the Head Deputy at the school. She is such a lovely person and has been an amazing mentor. She is one of the sweetest persons I have ever had chance to meet and I very much hope to see her again someday. She truly cares for her staff and only wants the best for them. When I came by her office to bid her farewell, she surprised me with one of the most gorgeous scarves I have ever seen. She had noticed how much I love scarves and how I'm almost always wearing one, so she went and bough one from Miss Selfridge as a parting gift for me. I was truly touched by her thoughtful gesture and am so grateful for it.

Since I don't have my good camera here with me, I can't take a proper photograph of an outfit. However, I do have a similar dress as in the picture below and the scarf is actually the one that was given to me. The only item I don't have would be the mint coloured shoes, but these have been on my wish list for quite a while, so very soon...

Paisley Neon Scarf