THE LIST: january essentials

january essentials

1. Hear No Evil – Gold earbuds 2. FWSS Badlands toque 3. Ashley Brooke Designs mug 4. Deborah Lippmann nail polish 5. Stuart Weitzman Slash bootie – black 6. Givenchy leather pants 7. Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream moisturizer 8. Aritzia Auxiliary Bega satchel 9. Club Monaco Bing Bang ring 10. Bauble Bar Jumbo Cairo earring 11. Stuart Weitzman Slash bootie – seal velour

When January roles around, I have a hard time balancing my ‘want’ list with my fairly standard, year-to-year goal of saving money. My essentials list includes some things that are already part of my go-to’s, but I’m also focused on a few great things that I’m keeping in mind for when I do give into those retail therapy moments…case in point: Stuart Weitzman booties.

maddy1

why I stopped using my CLARISONIC

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I know, I know, shocking. Have you ever heard of someone returning a Clarisonic? I hadn’t either, until I did it. Before investing in my Clarisonic Mia 2 I did extensive research. Asking friends about their experiences, reading articles about why people (mostly) love this skincare tool, and even striking up a conversation with a stranger at Club Monaco. Thus far, the only person I’ve seen to NOT be on team sonic revolution is Garance Doré. My skin can be quite sensitive to products, so in true form, I researched until I felt content that the tool would work for my skin, opting for the ultra-sensitive brush.

A best friend, and avid Clarisonic user, advised me that the first few weeks could be disappointing, meaning your skin may break out because all of the dirt and bacteria is essentially being vibrated and shaken out of your pores. Instantly, I noticed the benefits of the Mia 2. After just one use my skin was squeaky clean. I grew a bit addicted to it, and you could find me Clarisonic-ing (once daily, in the evening) with a smirk of content. My skin felt clean, but I had yet to notice any physical benefits. Since the brand allows returns up to 30 days and Sephora up to 60, I decided to include the product as part of my beauty regimen for two months.

It wasn’t until approximately a month and a half later that I started to question the results. My skin started to feel a little irritated, so for a week I went back to my regular routine, sans sonic suds. Upon using the Clarisonic again, I decided the tool might be a little too intense for my skin. While I certainly appreciated the super clean feeling of my face post-use, I’m not certain the brush method is meant for all skins types. For my overly sensitive skin, that is dry/normal more so than oily, the Mia 2 likely removed too much of the natural oils and sebum that are created. When my skin started to break out and feel rough in certain areas, I put the Clarisonic down and decided my tried-and-true evening hand wash, plus 3 to 4 times a week of exfoliating was just fine for me.

While I’m certain of the positive results this modern skincare technology offers to others, I’ve already seen my skin shift back to its regular-self, which I’ve been satisfied with 95% of the time. I guess I just had to give in to the revolution and discover the hype (or not) just for a moment. So, Clarisonic on, or don’t, but be sure to listen to your skin AND continue to use an exfoliating cleanser in your routine – the sonic device is not an exfoliant after all (so my research taught me)!

I’d love to know your thoughts! Have you joined the sonic revolution?

maddy1

wilfred montpellier PART 2

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So, I’m still in love with this sweater. Sometimes you just can’t get enough of a good thing, and the Wilfred Montpellier turtleneck is now an essential piece in my winter wardrobe. This outfit features most of my favourite things, it’s no wonder the combo has become a repeat offender – these are my new basics.

Other things of note: Charlie chooses to fly around like a fluffy blur in photos, and I’m terribly missing my long hair.

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{Artizia Montpellier sweater, Citizens of Humanity jeans, Wilfred coat, Rag & Bone booties}

maddy1

THOUGHTS on 2014

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Just like that, it’s January. 2014 was a year I couldn’t have expected. Moving across the continent and back, I’ve found myself completely elated, frustrated, confused, in love, content, and grateful, to name a few. The year tested me emotionally in many ways that most people would never wish upon twelve months, all the while I’ve learned alot.

  1. take chances: I’ve never been too afraid of change – moving cities and apartments has always been familiar to me. Moving to California, though, putting total trust in a relationship and leaving everything but two suitcases, a large carry-on and Charlie behind, is much different than moving to a new neighbourhood. While this moment was not meant to be in San Francisco, I’m happy to have been brave enough to try a new experience and return to Toronto confidently.
  2. believe in yourself, even if that means surprising yourself: When I decided to move back to Toronto, I was terrified of returning. The prospect of job searching alone made me rethink my decision. But just when I was doubting myself, I continued to channel everything into my one goal, which to my surprise resulted in success.
  3. minimize for better quality: In May, I totally purged my closet. I felt like I was in some weird rehab I had pushed on myself. Did I need 25+ pairs of jeans? Probably not, but they could keep me cozy at night if all else failed! Minimizing my wardrobe, and life, has helped me to realize that I don’t need all the clutter. I’ve also taken on the new perspective to buy less, better quality things. I still get caught up in the odd trend, though.
  4. say what you mean: For the most part, I tell it how it is. Sometimes, when you are at your most vulnerable it’s difficult to open up and really say what you want to express or need to get off your chest. My opinion: if you have something to say, say it, but mean it. There are few people I hold close and speak to when I need it the most.

In 2015, I’m looking forward to more simplicity. I will be setting goals and writing them down, if not here then on paper to keep as reminder.

What have you learned in 2014?

maddy1

BLUE is the WARMEST COLOUR

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My collection of grey things continue to grow. As an adult, I find my wants and needs to find further distinction, so my wish list consisted of needs: a book, undies, a potato masher (kitchen essentials sometimes get lost) and one want: Aritzia’s Auxiliary Bega Satchel. While my list may seem completely lame to most, I think as you become capable of buying yourself the things you want, your wish list is inevitably pared down. I had to of course request this satchel is my favourite shade of grey.

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{Wilfred scarf, Gap shirt, Citizens of Humanity jeans, Melissa booties – also worn here, American Apparel toque, Auxiliary Bega Satchel}
 

maddy1

what’s in MY CUYANA BAG

With Christmas just a few days away many people are traveling to get home for the holidays. This year I flew home to Ottawa from Toronto and since Charlie is my main carry-on bag packing my Cuyana purse perfectly is crucial to being able to bring everything I need.

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My Cuyana Leather Tote perfectly holds my MacBook Air, amongst many other traveling essentials. When flying I may go a little overboard with my laptop, book (currently reading Wild by Cheryl Strayed), chargers and earbuds. You just never know when you might need Netflix during a delay – I’m the girl watching 90210 in the corner. Since I wear contacts, I always travel with contact solution and glasses. Airplanes are so dry; Vaseline, Lucas Papaw and Roc Enydrial moisturizing cream keep my skin hydrated in-flight. Packing a few beauty products (my must-haves: Nars Bronzer in Laguna, Benefit Erase Paste) mean you can freshen up post-flight while waiting for your baggage. And a little red lipstick doesn’t hurt either – MAC in Russian Red is my new classic.

So, what’s in your travel bag?

maddy1

MATT BERNSON flats

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The biggest struggle I believe there to be in the shoe game, is that of finding flats that don’t kill your vibe (i.e. your feet). These shoes rate a 7.5 in terms of breaking in effort (1: peachy & comfortable, 10: cannot walk, get me a cab). It may have been my fault to break these in while trekking around SF during Fleet Week, but despite the fact that I literally limped to my Uber at the end of the day, these flats are now my favourite. A few days of pain is nothing, am I right? Just gotta train those feet to accept a new shoe. GFB tip: Cover anticipated pain-spots in Life Brand Anti-Blister Stick.

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I’m not sure if that really sells you on the shoe, but Matt Bernson’s Verona flat is where classic flat, meets loafer, meets slipper. The leather is super soft and while your heels may be sore, your arches will not be – they’ve got a 5mm memory foam! So, yes, I would purchase these again, oddly enough, and they’re currently on sale, so why not. If a shoe can eventually make you forget about your first week getting to know it, I’d say they’re in it for the long-run.

maddy1

CHRISTMAS GREENERY + diy

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This is my second year with my own Christmas tree and I’ve already fallen for the tradition and excitement it adds to the holidays. My tree theme – I’m not so sure I think a pine needs a theme – has been black and white with spots of gold and blue ornaments. In tree styling, I believe a large ribbon or garland is a must, it’s the belt that pulls everything together, and the topper should speak for itself. It’s much like getting dressed in the morning, wouldn’t you say?

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This year, I went a little further into holiday decor with a simple wreath DIY. Feeling festive, yet classic, I love the natural look of my wreath and think it’s the perfect design for my first festive crafting experience. Is it really necessary to be incorporating peonies into holiday greenery? As a Canadian, I’m sticking to pure pine. Check out the full DIY instructions over here – best enjoyed with crafty friends.

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maddy1

wilfred montpellier PART 1

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Who ever thought we’d be loving turtlenecks? I mean, sure they’re totally practical, keeping your chin to collar area cozy, but growing up turtlenecks were always the thing my mom wore and tried to push on me. Well, I guess she was right.

If you remember last year’s xxl sweater, then it’s no surprise Aritzia’s Wilfred Montpellier sweater has found it’s way into my weekly wardrobe rotation. I’ve found myself wearing this merino wool knit all the time, which is why I’m highlighting three ways to wear it. I’m loving the drop-waist look a longer sweater over a skirt can give. Pairing the two is also the perfect balance of oversized and fitted, not to mention cozy and scant.

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{Aritzia Wilfred sweater, Club Monaco skirt, Rag & Bone booties – also worn here}
 

Ok, so I don’t always match my nails to my turtlenecks, but I’m in love this Greyfitti manicure. Are you cozying up with big knits this winter?

maddy1

 

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