Sunday, November 19, 2017

Essie Leathers Collection by Rebecca Minkoff- Holiday Gift Guide

I can't believe Christmas is coming up which means it's time for beauty gift reviews! Today, I'll be sharing a no-brainer gift for any beauty lover: the Essie Leathers Collection by Rebecca Minkoff. The gift set features 4 minis that will in a leather like finish. Intriguing? Yes! It also comes packaged in a super cute box which looks like a Rebecca Minkoff purse which I actually have!

Side note, if you don't know, Rebecca Minkoff is essie's global color designer! Very cool!

Each nail polish is 5mL but the brush feels just like the regular size. I actually like mini sized products as I never finish products anyways and polishes end up getting thick and goopy before I can finish them. The four polishes sit comfortably in a heavy duty plastic try. The outer box is packaged as if it's a Rebecca Minkoff purse and is so adorable!

The shades are inspired by Rebecca Minkoff's fan favorite leather bags but they do lean towards the holiday theme. I'm not sure if I've ever seen the red, blue, or green bags? It retails for $18.99 which is a fantastic price point for a pre packaged gift and you can find this at Shoppers Drug Mart!

Cross Body Heat: My favorite shade of the pack, this is a purple lilac that is in the same shade as the box packaging and the real purse. It's not very Christmas/holiday friendly but when it comes spring, I'll be wearing this shade all the time!

Tote-ally in Love: The next three shades seem more holiday inspired as I don't recall seeing any purses in these shades.This one is a classic Christmas shade and is a deep true red.

In Hot Purse-uit: I kind of wish this was a gold to round out the collection but this shade is a royal navy blue. It is a beautiful striking shade but I'm not sure if it's holiday or purse inspired.

Back in the Saddle: Lastly, we definitely need a green to to represent the Christmas trees. This one is a nice deep forest green which I have been loving this season.

The most interesting part about these polishes is definitely the leather finish. It gives off a gritty appearance which surprisingly does look like leather but still feels very smooth to the touch. The closest way I can describe it is that it looks like when you touched your polish before it dried down and left a finger print, but in a nicer way.

You can use a top coat though which will usually leave a glossy finish. If you want to keep the leather finish, I would recommend either not using a top coat or using a matte top coat. Each of the polishes also look like they have glitter in the bottle. But once applied, none of them are glittery and instead gives off that pebbly leather appearance.

I love the unique inspiration and the adorable packaging of this gift set! It's extra luxurious as it feels like a essie + Rebecca Minkoff present all in one. For a friend that enjoys makeup, give this gift for an adventure combining nail polish with fashion!

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Best Hotels for Every Budget in Jervis Bay, NSW (2 Hours south of Sydney)

Recently I've been spending a lot of my spare time doing travel research and I thought why not kill 2 birds with one stone and summarize some of my research into a useful blog post! I'm headed to Sydney in about 2 weeks and while I have 5 days in the city, I wanted to have more of a beach vacation instead!

Just south of Sydney is the Shoalhaven area including Jervis Bay which has more beaches than you can count! I ended up booking the Dolphin Shores as it's pretty highly rated and very close to Hyams Beach. During the process though, I looked at tons of hotels/resorts and wished there was a good list of curated properties. So today, I'm putting together some of the coolest Splurge, Moderate, and Budget hotels in the Shoalhaven region so you can plan your getaway vacation from Sydney!


Paperbark Camp 
571 Woollamia Rd, Woollamia
20 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $395 AUD per Night

If you love camping, or even if you don't, Paperbark Camp offers a totally unique glamping experience! There are 12 tents and each is insect screened and comes with all the amenities of a hotel including light and shower! However, there is no power in the tents, so you'll have to leave your electronics behind and get in tune with nature!

Bannister by the Sea
191 Mitchell Parade, Mollymook Beach 
45 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $340 AUD per Night

For a Caribbean-esque stay, drive a bith further south to Mollymook to stay at Bannister by the Sea. The basic rooms come with balconies and the ocean views are to die for! What really caught my attention though was the infinity pool at the hotel! This would be the perfect hotel for a romantic getaway.

Dolphin Sands
6 Tomerong St, Huskisson
15 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $240-$270 per Night

Dolphin Sands is the closest hotel on this list to Hyams Beach. It is located in Huskisson which has a few restaurants although nothing worth mentioning. There are only five bedrooms in the house, and a full breakfast is served along with your stay. The rooms are generously sized and adorably decorated although it is definitely not luxurious. But there is a gorgeous outdoor dining area though and I'd be hoping to spot some kangaroos while sipping on coffee.


Worrowing at Jervis Bay
81 The Wool Rd, Worrowing Heights
10 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $225 AUD per Night

There are 11 very distinct accommodation options at Worrowing at Jervis Bay. The one that would be great for couples is the One Bedroom Cottage. It's not fancy but it has that rustic farm feel that I love in vacation homes. The suite is spacious and has a living area as well as a kitchenette. For those wanting to get out in the wilderness and enjoy cute ccottages, this one's for you.

Quest Nowra
130 Kinghorne St, Nowra
30 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $194 AUD per night

What really drew my attention to Quest Nowra is the modern exterior and classy decor inside. With so many cottages and historic buildings around, it's a refreshing option for a minimalist modern design. The studios comes with a kitchentte so you can also do a little grocery shopping. There are 1/2/3 bedroom apartment options if you are traveling with a bigger crowd.

The Berry Inn
17 Prince Alfred St, Berry
50 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $170 AUD weeknights, $210 AUD  weekends

It's not all about the beaches in the Jervis Bay area. Berry Inn offers a country accommodation close to delicious restaurants in the charming village of Berry and easy access to wineries in this region. The hotel is set in an old stable but the rooms have all recently been renovated. There are 5 units available with 2 of them being hotel rooms and 3 being apartments. The furnishing is super bright and they all come with huge bathrooms!


Sea Mist
13 Berry St, Huskisson
15 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $159AUD per night

For an AirBnb style stay, the Burrow on Berry just opened in February 2017 as part of the Sea Mist property. The original two listings are for 2 bedroom villas, and this new addition is a self contained studio. The studio opens up to an outdoor patio and includes cheerful bright furnishing! The two bedrooms are actually only $220 per night so it's really great value if traveling with a bigger group!

Pleasant Way River Lodge
9 Pleasant Way, Nowra
30 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $155 AUD per Night

A cheaper option for you in Nowra is the Pleasant Way River Lodge. This motel features an indoor pool, laundry facilities, and a garden. Also great are free parking, free wifi, and barbeque grills! The rooms are newly renovated and the colors remind me of the color schemes of a Disney resort room.

Dolphin Shores
53 Beach St, Vincentia
7 Minute Drive from Hyams Beach
Pricing: $140 AUD per Night

Last but not least is the Dolphin Shores which is the #1 rated in Jervis Bay (although only out of 7 on Tripadvisor). I picked them because they are the closest to Hyams Beach and I wanted to get an early start to the day and be first at the beach! The rooms are very basic but according to the reviews it's comfortable and clean. There are 8 styles of units to choose from so you can definitely find the perfect fit for you.

The pricing per night is based on the most standard room on a weeknight in November. Based on the dates you are traveling, it may be different!

I'm super excited for my trip. If you were taking a vacation in this area, which of these hotels would you choose?

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Kiehls Best Sellers - What You Need and What You Don't

I knew my boyfriend was a keeper when I saw all his Kiehl's products around the shower and bathroom. I surprisingly have had little exposure to the brand until this year when I won a prize pack from Coquitlam Centre for a few skincare items under the Calendula collection and now recently when I received a package of Kiehls' 6 best sellers!


Thursday, November 9, 2017

Kiss NY Pro Cosmetics Hexa Eyeshadow Palette in Nude Brown- Review, Swatches, Demo

Earlier this fall, I was introduced to Kiss New York Professional, a brand new line of cosmetics in Canada with the motto of "Be Your Own Pro". I was already familiar with the Kiss Products brand which features false lashes and press on nails which are perfect for special occasions! But this my first time trying out cosmetics from the Kiss NY Pro brand.

Today I'll be reviewing the Hexa Palette in Nude Brown. I also used their Magical Ink Eyeliner and Intensif-Eye Liner to complete the look. You can find all of these products exclusively at London Drugs or Rexall!

Name: Kiss New York Professional Hexa Eyeshadow Palette
Shade: Nude Brown (4 palettes)
Price: $9 USD
Size: 10.5g
Available at London Drugs, Rexall, and online

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Nail Polish Collection Declutter- Almost 50% decluttered!

I watch declutter videos on Youtube like a TV series. I think it's so fun to see what items people have in their collections, realizing they have too much stuff, and deciding what to keep and what to donate. I've been doing it my makeup for the past few months as I create my Best in Beauty list (you can check out my foundation collection and mascara collection). But I decided to do a declutter on my nail polish collection too as it was getting out of hand!

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Sephora VIB Sale Fall 2017 - Skincare Picks

Every beauty lover's favorite time of the year is here! 20% off at Sephora is coming up! I'm sure we are all loading up our baskets but I wanted to share a couple of items that's really caught my eye. The number of adorable holiday kits is so overwhelming and I wish I could stock my bathroom with all of them! But I'll try to narrow those down to the best value so if you are looking to try out a few new skincare items, this is the post for you!

Tarte Skin Win Hydrating Kit
This is the most affordable item but looks like a jam packed kit! There are four items in here: moisturizer, lip balm, face mist, and maracuja oil. I love that they mixed the Tarte Maracuja Oil which is a cult favorite with new releases!