Get your rear in (Bench) gear…..Brighten up with Bench!

Although there are still remnants of winter in Ontario (freezing rain today being a prime example), it looks like there are hints of spring all around-birds on my fence, longer periods of light, etc.   This extended winter has contributed to my expanding waistline (but I know I am ultimately responsible for my own behavior).  It’s time to face the facts, and lace up my shoes.  Although I’m a bit late for the ‘Summer bodies are made in winter’ mantra, it’s time for me to get my rear in gear….figuratively AND literally.  Check out the latest and greatest from Bench:

Bench. Color Pitch Creative

  • Liven up your yoga routine by splashing colour into your outfit with the Suriah Crop Racer Vest
  • Slip into the Achiever Hooded Zip Thru to stay visible and keep cozy on breezy spring evenings
  • Energize from the outside-in and bring your workout to the next level with the Baddah E Leggings 
  • From student to explorer, the Bingam Backpack adds a punch of lemon yellow on the front and a bright lining on the inside – which makes it easier to find your keys and phone!

I absolutely love Bench athletic clothing, especially the fleece and hooded zips. They keep me warm and are functional.  I can’t wait to swap my black/grey tops and bottoms for some light/bright pieces like these!   In fact, I’m so happy, I jumped for joy!


What’s your fitness & health plan for this spring?  Tell me!  Going anywhere fun-a jog or weekend camping?


Find Bench Canada:

on the web

on facebook

on twitter

on instagram


Treat Yo-self….with skin treats from fresh!!! Bonus-anti aging recipe for the hands!

When I hear about the brand fresh what immediately springs to mind is the fresh lip scrubs and lip tints (of which I have several and gift them on the regular). I know so many people that have at least 1 of these in their purse, bag, jean pocket, or hand.  I never associated the brand with skincare.  After doing a bit of ‘investigation’ with my bestie Google….. the brand has so much history-and surprisingly their skincare was developed BEFORE my beloved lip products.



I’m really into my skin….and I take my skincare seriously.  I have a fairly “involved” daily routine but absolutely love indulging in a luxurious mask or giving myself a nice scrub.  Especially when the products are natural, and smell amazing.   Take a look:


Sugar Face Polish: A nourishing exfoliant made with pure brown sugar and strawberry seeds that refines and hydrates for a more radiant complexion.

  • Brown sugar, a natural humectant that seals in moisture, gently buffs away dry, dull skin.
  • Real wild strawberries, packed with vitamin C, help to brighten and soothe.
  • Plum seed oil and grapeseed oil are notable for their hydrating and nourishing properties

rose face cream

Rose Face Mask:  A unique gel formula infused with real rose petals and pure rosewater that hydrates and tones the complexion.

  • Pure rosewater is notable for its soothing and toning properties.
  • Cucumber extract and aloe vera gel help soothe the skin and have an immediate cooling and calming effect.
  • Porphyridium cruentum, a “smart” algae, delivers optimum moisture.
  • Antioxidant-rich green tea helps to brighten and protect.


Black Tea Instant Perfecting Mask: A hydrating treatment that immediately reveals softer, firmer, healthier-looking skin.

  • Black tea ferment is an advanced antioxidant that helps to defend against wrinkle-causing free radicals** while softening, smoothing, and enhancing luster.
  • Lychee seed extract helps maintain the skin’s elasticity.
  • Polysaccharides help to smooth the skin.
  • Jicama root juice is notable for its hydrating and nourishing properties

*bonus*-here’s my “recipe” to prevent the dreaded “Madonna Hands Syndrome”  (notice she is ALWAYS wearing gloves lately?  It’s to hide the aging). 

  1. Wash hands with antibacterial soap and dab dry.
  2. Rub fresh sugar face polish all over hands and don’t skip in between fingers.  Wait 5-10 minutes and then rinse off.
  3. Apply fresh rose face mask to hands (don’t skip any parts again).  Wait 5-1o minutes and then rinse off.
  4. Apply your favorite deep moisture hand cream  Voila!  Instantly soft and hydrated hands that look youthful and vibrant!

The verdict?

Love love LOVE these products.

Love that they are natural and good for my skin

Love that they smell amazing

Love that they work and give me skin that is soft and dewy.

Give these a try-they’re worth the splurge!  Find fresh:

on the web

on facebook

on twitter



Spring must-haves from Annabelle!

Pictures speak volumes, so I’ll get right to it:


BAM! Annabelle’s got you covered for spring.  Pop of pink on the cheeks, some all over natural bronze, and some hydration on the lips.  What else can I say?



Firming up with Vichy!

Vichy knows what I need.  And what I need right now is a solution to these jiggly thighs….and before you go ahead with the “You shoulds….” please note, I am in the latter part of a whole food cleanse (FIRST TIME I HAVE EVER EVER GIVEN UP COFFEE), and have committed to exercise/movement 3 days a week.  All that AND the warmer weather (which will force me to be outside), and I can’t see myself jiggly for too much longer.

But then there’s the cellulite.  WHY WHY WHY…..even at my fittest, it still resides on the backs of my thighs.  Ultimately, the total cellulite ‘solution’ for me will include liposuction but since I’m not independently wealthy (yet), I’m thrilled with topical solutions.

Firming during the day: Ideal Body Serum Milk

IdealBody_Serum_Milk_390x315For the 1st time, active ingredients traditionally used in face care: Hyaluronic Acid and LHA were combined with 10 fundamental oils to help women obtain ideal skin quality on the body: firmer, smoother and more radiant skin. Vichy Research discovered that lipids are essential agents for ideal skin quality. Anti-dryness, improved skin radiance and luminosity, smoothing, softness and firming action are the many benefits that the new IDEAL BODY range offers.

So Hyaluronic acid is a common ingredient in dermal fillers (Juvederm, etc) and is used to ‘plump’ and ‘fill’ lines.  It works well when injected and does have promise when applied topically (there are many facial products that contain it). I will say that this is MY first experience with Hyaluronic Acid for the body.  Also, I must say that this is also my FIRST experience with a serum for the body.  Do you know of any others?

I enjoy this product because it firms (not to the level of the night product), absorbs quickly, and has such a great fragrance.  I’m anxious to see how it performs over time.  I will say that for the texture of it, it moisturizes so well.  This is a GOOD thing.

Firming during the night:  Cellu Destock Night Time


*tip* look inside the package for tips on how to use-where to place the product, massaging, kneading.  These ‘instructions’ even discuss lymphatic drainage.  A+ for this Vichy……..the lymph system isn’t discussed ENOUGH!  I’m keeping the packaging-following the instructions is essential for this to actually work.  There is a lot of ‘science’ in the description from Vichy but go ahead and have a read:

Celludestock Night time integrates the latest revolutionary complex from Vichy, l’Adipo-stim. Adipo-stim is a combination of Zingiber and Dioschol in synergy with Pure Caffeine 5% to decongest, drain and improve microcirculation. Zingiber helps regulate the natural destocking process overnight and Dioschol limits the stocking of new lipids.

 This is my standout product.  I apply this and feel it.  The instructions say to wash it off your hands after applying.  I’d like to think it will be working over time and that I’ll see results, I won’t hold my breath.  I like the way it feels after applying.  Maybe I can be convinced to take a photo after finishing this product….hmmm on second thought, better take my word for it.

Find Vichy:

on the web

on facebook

on twitter

on instagram

LiveClean Coconut Milk Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner

I haven’t tried this product yet but wanted to get this  out to you quickly…’s too good to keep to  myself….let me know what you think.


… And just in time, as we find ourselves in another dry, cold winter that’s bound to wreak havoc on our hair. Capturing the moisturizing and rejuvenating powers of coconut, Coconut Milk Moisturizing Shampoo and Conditioner, developed specifically for all hair types, delivers just the right amount of moisture to keep your hair shiny and supple. The coconut oils in coconut milk, with their Vitamin E, lauric and capric acids, both moisturize and protect, penetrating the hair shaft to help prevent breakage and seal in moisture. Both shampoo and conditioner are enriched with Vitamins C and Provitamin B5, milk protein and rice protein adding to their nourishing, hydrating and strengthening properties. Never forgetting the sensory side of haircare, Live Clean’s Coconut Milk Moisturizing Shampoo lathers richly – and eco-safely! Both shampoo and conditioner are infused with just the right amount of coconut for a scent that evokes without overpowering. As always…eco-friendly, natural, plant-based…free of harsh chemicals. Live simple, live beautiful, live clean.


Live Clean Coconut Milk Moisturizing Shampoo

350 mL, suggested retail, $6.99

  • Gently cleanses as coconut oils add balance and hydration to hair
  • Enriched with Vitamins C, E and Provitamin B5
  • Rich in milk and rice protein to nourish and strengthen hair
  • Luxuriously hydrating creamy formula leaves hair feeling soft, silky and smooth
  • Plant derived
  • With Certified Organic Botanicals
  • Never tested on animals
  • Petroleum and Paraben Free
  • Silicone, Phthalate and Phosphate Free


Live Clean Coconut Milk Moisturizing Conditioner

350 mL, suggested retail, $6.99

  • Replenishes and rejuvenates as coconut oils add hydration and balance to hair
  • Enriched with Vitamins C, E and Provitamin B5
  • Rich in milk and rice protein to nourish and strengthen hair
  • Luxuriously hydrating creamy formula leaves hair feeling soft, silky and smooth
  • Plant derived
  • With Certified Organic Botanicals
  • Never tested on animals
  • Petroleum and Paraben Free
  • Silicone, Phthalate and Phosphate Free

I’m a huge fan of coconut and can’t wait to give this a try! What about you?

#Feelthebeach with Sanuk-walk in these shoes already!



The brand has been around since 1997 when founder Jeff Kelley started making sandals out of inner tubes and indoor-outdoor carpet. This spirit of innovation grew and became the backbone of the brand. Today, Sanuk makes products that are as much about funk and funk as they are about function. Feet are happiest when they tread the road less traveled- so we design our sandals accordingly!

Sanuk’s Spring 2015 collection takes you beyond the beach and the Bar-B-Q with the introduction of trend-right footwear that is sure to excite shoe aficionados. We’re taking Sanuk’s unique comfort beyond our sandals and patented Sidewalk Surfers, and introducing an entirely new category of contemporary shoes. Influenced by the spirit of the season, the collection is infused with uninhibited color and artful prints. The shoes feature a tailored fit, are offered in half sizes and come boxed, unlike Sanuk’s traditional hanging footwear. The collection features a variety of styles and silhouettes allowing anyone to experience the fun and function that is Sanuk and expressing personality through style.

They have a shoe for everyone….and here I thought I was just looking at some flip flops.  Wrong, wrong, WRONG.  Check this out:

IMG_20150310_144638IMG_20150310_144722IMG_20150310_144849IMG_20150310_145054IMG_20150310_145449IMG_20150310_145457IMG_20150310_145509IMG_20150310_145526IMG_20150310_145520IMG_20150310_145552IMG_20150310_150150IMG_20150310_150200So there really is something for EVERYONE here. From the Boardroom to the commute to the beach, Sanuk has got you (or your feet) covered! The footwear is comfortable AND fashionable!  The sole (pictured above) is made of a special  material that gives you the comfort you need and allows you to ‘go sockless’  (sans fear of odor) -yes in March!

Check out my feet in some Sanuk footwear!


Want to know more?  Here’s where to find Sanuk:

on the web

on twitter

on facebook

on Instagram

Glow baby Glow! My Miracle 10 peel & skincare-it’s not what you’d expect, it’s better!

If you’ve read my blog, read my Facebook timeline, twitter timeline, or instagram timeline-you will know I’ve been around the skincare circuit.  Especially in Toronto….

You’ve been asking, so now I’m going to tell….

I’ve also blogged and spoken about (via social media) the Miracle 10 skincare boutique in Yorkville.  I’ve been there several times for a master class, and for IPL treatments –blog post

There are so many reasons to love Miracle10 -service and product.  My main reason for using their products almost exclusively is because they WORK with the ‘power of 10’

10 hours-noticeable results in smoothness & clarity

10 days-discoloration and dullness visibly improved

10 weeks-appearance of wrinkles and pore size diminished


The Miracle 10 Skincare collection is rooted in the science of the skin’s own healing abilities. Our scientifically proven recovery compounds include essential active ingredients ranging from Grapeseed Oil, Vitamins C and E, to Retinol, and EMC10, our patented blend of peptides. These laboratory tested ingredients bring skin to a whole new level of beauty, clarity and radiance.

The Miracle10 Facial Peel:

The revolutionary Miracle10 Facial Peel combines a fruit enzyme scrub with a unique derma-planing treatment to slough off layers of dull, dry skin.  A mild lactic or glycolic peel is applied to the skin, followed by a soothing, anti-oxidant rich clay mask. Extractions may be conducted as necessary.  Skin will look and feel  soft and supple.

I just came from my latest Miracle10 treatment-their face peel, and it was so good I have to tell you about it.  Like I said, I’ve had peels before.  The aesthetician cleanses your face and then applies the peel for several minutes, it tingles, she removes it, applies moisturizer and away you go.

Not at Miracle10….

I arrived at the clinic and was led to a treatment room.  Nadia, the esthetican asked me a series of questions and then explained the treatment.  She cleansed my face.  Then she began to Dermaplane.  Just in case you don’t know, Dermaplaning is a simple and safe procedure for exfoliating the epidermis and ridding the skin of fine vellus hair (peach fuzz).  Using a scalpel and a delicate touch, the provider simply abrades the surface of the skin using light feathering strokes.

After the Dermaplane, she applied the peel.  There are 3 types of peels available, and the one applied on my skin was a lactic acid peel (the most gentle.  Glycolic and Salcyclic are also offered).  She left it on for several minutes (a fan was blowing on my face), then used soft cotton pads to ‘buff’ the product into my skin.  She removed the peel afterwards by using cool cotton pads.

After the cotton pads, she gave me goggles to wear and applied dry ice to my skin to ensure it was absolutely clean (this kills any remaining bacteria).  It felt cool on my skin.

A hydrating, cooling masque was applied to my face and the lights were lowered.  The masque sat on my face for approximately 15 minutes and it felt wonderful!

At the end of the treatment, sunscreen was applied and then it was over.


This isn’t your average peel

I recommend it

  • There are several stand out features of this peel: dermaplane, masque
  • the skincare products complement the treatment(s) available
  • I’m sticking with Miracle10

Want to know more!  Hit up:

Miracle10 website

Miracle10 twitter

Miracle10 facebook

Miracle10 instagram


#BeautyUnited Spring-Let me tell you about my favorites!


Little black boxes on my doorstep are the best kind of surprise!

I have PLENTY to say about everything in the box but how about I tell you about my favorites…..


Wake up with hydrated skin and a bright, pearlescent, healthy glow with this Overnight Mask. Unlike a typical peel-off mask, this gel containing Vitamin B3, Mulberry extract, and humectants absorbs into the surface of the skin throughout the night. The formula works overnight at the surface cell level evening skin tone over time. 

Why I love it: The less effort the better and if I can multitask (read: sleep AND moisturize), I’m on it!

 A daily treatment designed to balance skin’s moisture, Olay Regenerist Luminous Facial Oil is infused with nine enriched, naturally derived oils that work together to create luminous skin. Perfume and dye-free, Olay Regenerist Luminous Facial Oil conditions and protects skin.

Why I love it:  As an incredibly brutal and frigid winter winds down, my skin is still recovering.  Why not nourish it and bring it back to it’s glowing glory?




The Olay Fresh Effects regimen is packed with acne fighting power! Featuring {Spot Zinger!} formulated with 2% salicylic acid to reduce blackheads and blemishes over time and {Swirled Mattifier!} formulated with powder to neutralize redness and shine.

Why I love it:  Spot Zinger is for those times when I get that ONE pimple and I know you know what I’m talking about.  Just a dab on the blemish and KA-POW, see ya later.  Swirled Mattifier is heaven-sent for me….anything that reduces the shine and oil breakthrough is a product I’ll use again and again and again.

Sooooo….how about a giveaway y’all?  Want to win my favorites above?  Check out the rafflecopter below.  Giveaway closes on March 26, 2015-you’ve got to be 18 or older to win AND this one’s for Canadian residents!



a Rafflecopter giveaway

A beautiful mess-getting dirty to get clean, with Jealous body scrub!

Body scrubs have been a ‘thing’ with me for a minute now…..

But I won’t use just ANY scrub.  I’m actually not a fan of what I would call a “straight” scrub.  What I mean by ‘straight’ is a scrub that just strips and doesn’t hydrate.  Those are great at times and have their own place.  Just not in my shower.

My favorite scrubs are the ones that offer an exfoliation AND some hydration.  I haven’t found a whole lot of those types-I can count on one hand the brands I’ve come across.  Jealous body scrub is in this category and I’m sure you already know this review is positively GLOWING!


Jealous body scrub is a COFFEE scrub-here’s the details, directly from their website:

 All Natural Coffee Scrub with Premium Robusta Coffee, Organic Cold Pressed Coconut Oil, Raw Brown Sugar, Sea Salt, Vitamin E and Minerals.
Tough enough to improve your skin’s imperfections yet leaving your skin feeling sexy & smooth after every use.

  • coffee grounds stimulate blood flow which help reduce the appearance of cellulite, eczema, stretch marks, age spots, varicose veins, psoriasis & acne
  • brown sugar & sea salt exfoliate and rejuvenate your skin
  • cold pressed organic coconut oil hydrates & moisturizes your skin
  •  vitamin E & minerals protect and repair your skin


My thoughts:

  • A+ for packaging and marketing-the marketer in me screams for joy and does cartwheels over the eco-friendly, resealable packaging that is efficient in both design and with the amount of verbiage on it.
  • If you love coffee, you will LOVE the scent of this scrub because that’s exactly what it is!  It is actual grounds in look and fragrance and texture.
  • The scrub DOES what it says it is going to do-stimulate, rejuvenute, and hydrate.  Just keep in mind, this is going to be on you for 5-10 minutes.  My suggestion/tip/trick?  Do the jealous when you masque your hair (and if you’re not masque-ing your hair, why the hell aren’t you? DO IT!!! It’s good for your hair!).
  • The other tip/trick/suggestion I will offer up is to use the jealous when your tub/shower is in need of a thorough clean.  Because this is a coffee ground product, be prepared. It gets EVERYWHERE and I mean everywhere. However, let’s be optimistic-you will have a hydrated body AND a sparkling clean shower after you get through!
  • The social media team (or individual) at jealous also is quite clever -see some of their work here.  This motivates me to want to be healthier after seeing all these bikini-clad model types prancing around in the sun!

jealous body scrub is a winner to  me-I suggest you try it too!


Dessange, Dessange, Dessange…..Je t’aime (and I do not speak French)

*This post contains products sent for review.  Opinions are mine all mine-just want to tell you this was sent to  me UP FRONT*

I’m always on the lookout for a great shampoo/conditioner and on new brands.  I have to be even more careful since wearing my extensions.  I can’t use just any old something ‘off the shelf’ due to ingredients that could potentially shorten the life of my extensions.

L’Oreal Paris Canada invited me to a fabulous event to reveal their newest acquisition-Dessange.  Dessange hails from Paris and has a rich history in the hair ‘world’.  The event was nothing short of magnificent.

Let’s take a closer look at Dessange:

dessange collage

There are 4 different types within the Dessange brand-photos of respective models clockwise from top left

solar blonde

1. Solar Blonde-for natural blondes is a lightening haircare system that clarifies and lightens natural blonde hair while restoring lustre and volume.

oleo miracle

2. Oleo Miracle  offers intense nourishment and is infused with 3 natural oils: Argan ol, Camelia Oil, and Pracaxi Oil, leaving hair smooth and ultra manageable.  A high concentration of Behhenic Acid helps this collection deeply penetrate into the hair for healthier hair.


3. California Blonde-color treated blondes is inspired by the blonde bombshell look made famous by Brigitte Bardot (and created by Jacques Dessange).  This system provides moisture to the hair while highlighting the radiance.

color restore

4. Color Restore helps protect colour treated hair.  Formulated with AHA, Vitamin E, and UV filters, this collection restores hair fibers for a smooth, shiny look and helps protect vibrancy.

My thoughts:

I’ve been using the ‘California Blonde’ collection on my hair for just over 2 weeks now (but not the purple toning shampoo).    I like it-a lot.  It’s got a beautiful floral scent.  The conditioner is the right amount of moisture, hydration and the elixir is perfect for my ends.  I appreciate that Dessange separated his blondes…..natural blondes have different needs than ‘bottle’ blondes!  There really and truly is something for everyone in the line and when you use these products, you will have salon results.  It’s not your typical drugstore shampoo & conditioner (not that there is anything wrong with that).

This collection will be available (in Canada) exclusively at Shoppers Drug Mart. All products are between $12.99-$14.99 CAD.