Saturday, 30 May 2015

Nude Lips for Darker Skintones

It's been quite a battle finding the perfect nude for my skin tone. A lot of the nudes out there are great for lighter skin tones but the light pinks don't work well on my skin. I've always known my perfect nude would be a balance between brown and pink but all the brown lipsticks are far too dark while all the pink ones are far too light. Whine whine whine.

But I've finally done it. I've finally found some perfect nudes for darker skin tones that don't make my lips look like I smoke a pack a day. It's been a few months of digging and swatching but I've finally done it.

My journey started with a lip liner I've raved about before.  I wear Rimmel's Exaggerate Automatic Lip Liner in Epic on a daily basis to work with nothing on top as it's the perfect nude for me. It's light brown with a pink/peach undertone. At first I felt as though this lip liner was drying but after several months, I realized it's just sticking to my lips (not sticky either). I wish I could find a better word for this; know that it's not drying or sticky, it's just ...there. After using this for so long, I don't feel it on my lips and it gives my lips a my lips but better look. It also lasts for a good long while (at least five hours) but it does start to rub off once I eat (lasts through drinks though!). It also makes my lipsticks (when I do wear any on top) last for ages. Knowing that this was my perfect nude, I then set out to find matching lipsticks which brought me to...
NYX Soft Matte Lip Cream in London (04): I need to have a moment of silence for the death of Target in Canada. Also, if any Canadians could tell me where else I could find these, that'd be great. This is a lovely light brown and I wear it on top of my Epic liner as I feel as though it's not dark/pink enough in it to wear on it's own. It lasts for a long, long while, it doesn't smudge or run and it doesn't dry out my lips. It's a win-win-win-win-win. There's also a slight vanilla scent which I love. The only downside is that it's hard to find even in the States as NYX SMLCs are so popular.

The last is a higher end brand that is darker that my previous picks and it's a creamy lipstick that I've really been liking. Buxom's True Nude Lip Foundation in Revealed is very pigmented and creamy. It's not drying and it lasts so so well without smudging or rubbing off. The colour is just as pigmented after eating as when I first put it on - it doesn't fade or transfer. It's easily the best formula of the three nudes though (get ready for more whining) I wish it was a tad lighter/more pink. Now if only I could get the Buxom formula with the Rimmel colour..

Have you tried any of these products (in any shade)? What are your thoughts on them. Leave your favourite nude lipsticks in the comment below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe! Hopefully we can get great nudes for a variety of skintones! 

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The Sunday Mind: Sex for Minors?

If you've seen one of my fairly recent tweets (shameless plug here: follow me on Twitter!), you'll know that I really wish I could write incredible, thought provoking opinion pieces. It's not that I don't have the opinions, I just don't think I have the technical skill that many wonderful writers do, to write something that is worded wonderfully and gets people thinking.

Anyway, I've decided to write my thoughts out - no recipes or reviews, just general thoughts I had - in the hopes of figuring out a writing style for opinion pieces. *EDIT* After writing some thoughts out, I've realized what a rambly writer I am so I'm going to break it down, one thought at a time. Here's what's been on my mind lately:

The Ontario Sex-Ed Curriculum. If you live in Ontario (or maybe anywhere in Canada), you'll know there's been a huge fuss on the new sex-ed curriculum. The plan is to start sex-ed teachings from grade 1, a decision many parents think is unsuitable. Here's why I'm confused as to why parents oppose it (and correct me if I have any facts wrong):

1. The curriculum will be age appropriate. In grade 1 students will learn the correct names for body parts, grade 3 will teach students about sexual orientation and gender, etc. I don't understand what's inappropriate about that - they're not tossing Karma Sutra at the kids and telling them to figure it out.

2. I think it's great teaching kids about sexual orientation and transgendered people will make them more broad-minded and tolerant. I hope it reduces bullying and suicide of LGBTQ.

3. I also love the fact that consent will be a topic. A lot of people I've spoken to says consent and values like that should be taught at home from parents; the problem is consent isn't been spoken about at home. I think parents assume their sons and daughters understand consent and respecting others but it's not an easy assumption to make. While I'm sure most parents don't teach their kids to rape or assault, they're not teaching them to not do such things either. If consent was stressed at home, there would be fewer cases of rape and assault. But that's not the case and I don't blame parents for not explicitly teaching their children so, I just think it's time they start.

4. I've also heard that parents have the choice for their children to opt-out of the class so why can't people just do that? I personally think that people just don't understand what the curriculum offers and at which ages. I'm curious to see all opinions so comment below on why you're for or against the curriculum!

Have you heard about this curriculum change? What are your thoughts on it? What's been on your mind lately - comment below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

STWW: Body Acne (and how to get rid of it!)

Here's a little story about something I've had for years and years that I was always so shy about: Bacne. It's not a "pretty" topic but it is common and human and natural so I thought why not share my story if it helps someone out.

I had fairly bad breakouts on my back for many years which I hated. As I got older, the frequency of these breakouts reduced (not by very much) but the scarring was still prominent. I was always so shy about wearing tank tops or strapless tops and wouldn't unless I wore my hair down to hide my back.

Around six years ago I made a decision that I wouldn't let something on my body affect me so negatively and started not caring about my scars and bacne - writing it out sounds silly, like I'm making it a bigger deal than it is but, back then, it was a huge deal to me. After appreciating my body for the wonderful things it does for me, rather than hating something small like scarring, I decided to take action on my breakouts. I visited a doctor who prescribed an acne cream for me. I did this for a few weeks and, while it worked, the second I stopped, my back would break out again. It was also incredibly drying on my skin and the chemicals would bleach my clothes. I spoke to a friend who had done research on this and she recommended something that's so easy and that I use everyday and swear by.

Head and Shoulders. That's it. Or any dandruff shampoo, really. I use it in place of a body wash - it's enough to combat my acne without drying my skin and I've used it for a few years now and love it. I break out much less frequently and my scars are gradually fading (though this isn't because of the shampoo). I also don't use a moisturizer on my back as I don't want the oils and chemicals to irritate my skin. This is the most effective thing I've used without drying my skin or bleaching my clothes.

Is body breakouts an issue for you? Write any products/ways to reduce body breakouts (and if you use Head and Shoulders) in the comments below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!

Sunday, 17 May 2015

The Easiest Summer Everything Sauce

Last week we had a barbecue for mother's day where my brother and I cooked for my mom and some family friends. I was able to learn a lot since my mom sat around like the Queen she is and instructed me on how to make marinades, sauce and dressings. We were originally going to use this sauce as a marinade for chicken but we decided to make some shrimp orzo instead and this versatile concoction became the dressing for that. It has a fresh flavour without being too lemony or garlicky - the perfect sauce for any picky eaters! It can also be drizzled over any salad for a light dressing - it is quite literally capable of flavouring anything!

All it takes are the whisking of a few ingredients: the juice of one and a half lemons, double that amount of Olive Oil, 3 tsp. Salt, 1/2 tsp. Pepper, 1 tsp. Oregano, and 5 cloves of garlic chopped finely. That's it! 

What's your favourite summer dressings/marinades - homemade or otherwise? Hope you guys try this easy recipe out since barbecuing season is upon us! Comment below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

STWW: Just a Funny Story

Just a quick, funny story this STWW - hopefully it brings a little laughter in your day!

I had a recent, summer epiphany to try and bake a s'mores brownie pie. I bought the graham crackers, the brownie ingredients and halal marshmallows (I'm Muslim and this uses either a fish, vegetable or cow gelatine, unlike the usual pork gelatine - similar to Kosher marshmallows) and set out the rest of the day to test this recipe, bake a brownie pie and take some photos for the blog.

I made the pie and added the final touches: the marshmallows, ready for browning! I set the oven to broil, didn't think I'd need a timer since it would only be in for a minute and turned my back to the oven, to check my emails.

A quick backstory: I'm forgetful. I'll put water to boil for tea and forget I'd wanted tea in the first place. When my mom asks me to make something and, much later, asks if it's done, my first response is "Oh yeah!" as I rush to start the task. I'll pop something in the oven and only remember it's done when I smell burnt food.

Two minutes later, my brother asked "is something burning?". I spun around to see my pie on fire. I began freaking out and asking my mom to call 911. She told me to keep the oven closed and get away while she called in. Being a chemical engineer, I should have remembered that all I needed to do was suffocate the fire (ie keep the oven closed) and fire would extinguish itself. In my frantic state, I forgot and and panicked.

One minute later, the fire was out (of course) but it was too late, the fire truck was on it's way. Two minutes, two fire trucks, one cop car and five firemen later, my home was filled with giant men in fireproof gear investigating a fire that no longer existed. All they found was a very black pie and a very embarrassed woman.
I was so incredibly embarrassed but thankfully they were so nice about it and told me I did the right thing. Tip: try not to use a fire extinguisher in  your oven because it damages the oven beyond repair.                                            
So this STWW: remember to use a timer! Share your funny baking stories below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Natural Beauty: Coconut Oil

I don't know if you've seen my haiku for Argan Oil but I'm a girl who seriously loves her oils.

I have curly hair that is very, very dry and that I love to straighten. Since I've started straightening my hair, I've noticed that it's thinned out a lot, it's become incredibly dry and frizzy and it breaks off so easily. I've tried so many products: keratin sprays, deep conditioners, heat protectors, expensive shampoos but none of them worked well or at all. Desperate, I asked my mom what she thought I should do and she told me what they use back home (Sri Lanka) - Coconut Oil.

My grandma has been using coconut oil on her hair since she was young and her hair is thicker than mine (she's more than 50 years older than me). While she, and many others from her generation, leaves it in her hair all day and everyday, I decided to do what works for me: to use it as a deep conditioner. This is now becoming very popular though it's something my grandmother has been practicing for decades and I can see the results.

I massage coconut oil onto my scalp and rub it all over my ends and leave it in for as long as I can - sometimes it's overnight but a lot of the time it's for an hour or so. I then wash it out and wash my hair as I normally would - with shampoo and conditioner. It is a deep conditioner so I would recommend that those with finer hair skip conditioner altogether to avoid getting too greasy. Ideally I would use coconut oil each time I wash my hair but it ends up being that I use this treatment maybe twice a month.

I've definitely noticed a difference - though my hair is still dry, it's not as dry as it once was. It's less prone to breakage and seems to grow much faster. It's also thicker though I'm not sure if it's just falling out less or growing more. I find when I stop using it, my hair thins out quickly which is a sure indication of just how harsh hot tools are on your hair. It's one of, if not the, best deep conditioning treatments I've ever tried. It's a huge bonus that it's all natural and isn't hard on the environment (no chemicals, no tiny plastic packaging).

Have you used a coconut oil hair mask before? Have you noticed a difference? Leave any recommendations for hair oils in the comments below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

STWW: Little Things

A few weeks (months?) back I did a STWW post on being grateful. Here are ten little things that I'm grateful for (summer edition!): 

1. Driving with the sunroof of your car open and windows down
2. Wearing sandals
3. Floral/Maxi dresses (or dresses in general!)
4. The smell of freshly cut grass 
5. Evening walks
6. Ice cream on a warm day
7. Bonfires and S'mores
8. Exploring Downtown Toronto
9. Hikes with my friends
10. Long days (words I'll be regretting once Ramadan comes round and I'll be fasting 19+ hour days!)

What are things you're grateful for this summer? Comment below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe! Also, don't forget to enter my $200 Dixie Outlet Mall Giftcard giveaway here!

Monday, 4 May 2015

SWHF, Part 4: The Giveaway!

The She Who Hunts Finds Series finale: A Giveaway!  If you've been following my series (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3), you'll know that I've been spending a lot of time and a little money at Dixie Outlet Mall, shopping and scoring great deals. And now you can too!

The lovely people at Dixie Outlet Mall has been so kind as to send me a $200 giftcard to the mall - so you can shop (and save) for your perfect spring outfit!

Some housekeeping before the fun begins: 
1. This giveaway is open to Canadian residents only (I'm sorry!) as the mall is in Canada
2. The giveaway will close Sunday, May 10th at Midnight (Eastern Time Zone, UTC: -5:00)
3. The winner will be chosen at random and I will notify the winner on twitter (I'm @SundayWardrobe) soon after the giveaway has ended
4. The prize is a $200 giftcard to Dixie Outlet Mall and all you have to do is enter below!
5. EDIT: I believe the giftcard can only be used in person so please be mindful of this before entering the giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck and Happy Shopping!

Friday, 1 May 2015

SWHF, Part 3: The Challenge

Jacket: Urban Planet / Tank top: Urban Planet / Pants: Laura Outlet / Shoes: Guess
If you've been following my She Who Hunts Finds series, you'll know that I was given a $200 gift card and challenged to shop at Dixie Outlet Mall in Mississauga and see how much I could save while buying a spring outfit. While I pride myself in being careful with my money and quite the deal finder, saving turned out to be harder than I expected! While there were many outlet stores with sales, a lot of the clothes were already so reasonably priced at full price. My silky tank top was only $12.50 and it wasn't even on sale!
As I mentioned last time, Dixie Outlet Mall has many stores that aren't limited to shoes and clothing - my mom was pleased to see a Michael's there and shopped for ribbons as I hunted around for deals. I spent three days in Dixie Mall as I had a hard time deciding on just a few pieces for spring. I was most excited to shop at Guess as this was an outlet store and things had been discounted quite a bit. I checked out stores such as Aldo, Winners, Sirens, Designer Depot, Dynamite and Nine West (and many more) before settling on Guess, Urban Planet and Laura. A lot of the stores were outlet stores and I could've easily bought an entire spring outfit for under $50 but the challenge was to see how much I could save and I desperately wanted to stick to it!
At savings of $98.70, I saved almost as much as I spent on the outfit. I was glad to find these great pants on sale since their quality was as high as their original price but I paid a lot, lot less for it!
I would recommend this mall to any bargain hunter if they're in the area (and if you stay tuned to next week, I'll be giving away a little incentive to visit!). I preferred shopping on a weekday as it was a lot less crowded but I will definitely be visiting again! 

What do you think of my outfit? Are you excited for next week's giveaway (I know I am!)? Comment below or tweet me @SundayWardrobe!