Thursday, August 15, 2013

tips for picking out flattering frames online

On Tuesday I posted about my new frames from Clearly Contacts that I bought with little to no research. They turned out fantastic and here are a few tips to help you do the same.

1. Know your face shape and what style frames suit it. My face is an oval so most frames look ok on me.
2. Know what style of frames you want. Go into that big commercial frame store and try a bunch on and get an idea of what kind of glasses you want. (This one is very important I did this around 3x before actually buying glasses online)
3. Be prepared to make a mistake. Make sure you read about the refund policy of the company you're using.
4. Make sure the company you're using online is legitimate. Google reviews.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Clearly Contacts Free Glasses Review

These are my new glasses. They cost me all of $37 CAD. I had finally gotten my pupillary distance (The distance between your pupil. You need this number to order glasses online. Apparently you can do it yourself, but I went to to my optometrist and they did it for $10) because I knew I wanted to buy my next pair of glasses online ($600 at a Lenscrafters when I could get the exact same pair online for $190? Guess which one I'm picking). On my facebook page a little ad popped up for Clearly Contacts free glasses promo (they do a few of these a year so just be patient). I decided on these frames in about 10 minutes, placed my order and walked away. I figured for $37 even if I hated them at least I wasn't out a ton of money.

I had ordered them on a Thursday and they had come in the mail by Tuesday. Talk about fast turn around! The best part? I love them! They're the perfect geek chic glasses that I've wanted for a while. My prescription is perfect and other than needing to get some minor fit adjustments they fit my face really well. If you've been looking at getting new glasses why not give Clearly Contacts a try? It's a great way to try out a style you're not 100% sure will suit you because the out of pocket cost is so minimal.

On Thursday I'll post about tips for buying glasses online, like how to pick out the best style for your face.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Currently loving... bows + braids

I'm loving these bow clips I picked up at Claire's for $5. I have four of them in different colours and I pop them onto the end of side braids to add some interest. I also love using these with sock buns.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Review: Origins VitaZing Moisturizer

I bought VitaZing about 3 months ago hoping for a great tinted moisturizer that would allow me to skip foundation when I felt like going low maintenance. Sadly VitaZing was not it. I ended up returning this product to Sephora this week after trying really hard to like it. It wasn't the moisturizing part, that was fine. It didn't make my sensitive skin break out at all. It was the colour. This made my fair skin look like I was a member of the Jersey Shore cast - Orange. It also did weird things around my eyebrows, going very dark in that area.

Definitely didn't deliver on the promise that it would make me look like I "eat right, sleep tight, and don't have a worry in sight".

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Organization nation!

Whenever I come home from trips my room always looks like a bomb went off. It's hard to sort out the nick-nacks you bring back with you into your everyday life. Which is why I've become obsessed with watching organization videos on YouTube. I did my t-shirt drawer the other day and this is the method I used to organize it.

My closet is weirdly shaped which makes keeping it organized difficult. It's normal closet length (door doors across) but only 4 feet high with a sloping ceiling. I struggle on a daily basis to keep my clothes under control. One way I do this is I keep an outbox in there at all times. This is for items I might get rid of soon but am unsure if I want to let go of them just yet. They live in the outbox for as long as needed and if I reach for them, great! they can stay. But if not then they get donated. This is a great way to get rid of items if you're sentimental about things.

Another way I'm working towards a more organized life is by challenging myself to tidy for up to 30 minutes a day. I pick one area a day (my floor, desk, a chair, tshirt drawer) and I have to organize that area. I don't have to spend more than 30 minutes doing it and if I get done early great! By breaking tasks into manageable sections I'm not overwhelming myself. Soon enough I'll have my room back into shape.  

Thursday, July 25, 2013

On the hunt for...

Leather leggings. I saw a girl wearing them at a concert back in December and I've been looking for a pair ever since. They step up your style in an edgy way that plain leggings don't.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


I did this look for my moms birthday party the other weekend. A bronzed smokey eye with a neutral lip. Something a little more polished and amped up than my daily look. I've been having a lot of fun with the smoked palette and just love playing around with it.
I put mushroom all over my lids with a bit of sin (from the naked palette) in the inner corner. I then put barlust in the crease and outer corner and blended with freestyle. I do wish the smoked palette had more medium toned colours, it's not a palette I can use on it's own.

Products used:
Urban Decay Smoked Palette
Urban Decay Zero Liner
Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation in I20
Maybelline Stay Matte powder
Urban Decay Potion Primer
Benefit Boi-ing concealer in 01
Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch
Maybelline Falsies Flared
Benefit Bella Bamba blush
Dior Amber Diamond
Chanel Coco Rogue Shine in Boy (not pictured)

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Review: Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette

I only really bought this product because it's great for weekends. Smaller than my Naked and Naked2 palettes it fits perfectly in an overnight bag with a couple of brushes so you can still look put together the next day without carrying around a ton of product.
This palette consists of 5 matte shades and one slightly shimmery highlight shade. Honestly the first three colours barely show up on my skin. I mix Walk of Shame and Venus for my inner corner and then use naked2 for my outer eye and faint in the crease. I don't see this as being a very versatile palette. While very useful it's not fun like the other Urban Decay palettes.

Honestly unless you do a lot of short trips or overnights I wouldn't recommend this palette. Not because the product itself is bad, the shadows perform like other Urban Decay shadows (though they are a touch powdery). It's just that this palette is boring. Which I guess is kind of the point when you have a basics palette.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


I love this song, something about the back and forth of the male and female singers is just amazing.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Newest Addiction

Because of the 13 hour flight I was able to convince myself (not that it was hard) that I needed to get a Nintendo 3DS. Why did I need a 3DS when I have a perfectly good DSlite sitting at home? Because I wanted to play Harvest Moon: A New Beginning of course!
I think this game is so cute and I absolutely love playing it. Though I am having a hard time choosing who to date...

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Travel: how I pack

As you can see from the photo above  I'm a bit OCD about my packing. I come from a family of over packers and struggle not to let them influence me when I go away. One of the ways I do this is to lay everything out about a week before hand and ruthlessly edit throughout the week. By laying everything out I can see what I have, what can pair with what, if I have a colour scheme (which apparently I do! The Black, Blue, and Red theme was only noticed after I lay everything out).

If something only goes with one outfit than I tend to edit it out. I want my tops to go with more than one bottom. For this trip I'm actually working so I have a more 'professional' clothing than I normally do. Despite the fact that Japan will be super hot this time of year, I'm packing a lightweight cardigan to throw over dresses so that I'm not revealing too much.

Jersey dresses are a mainstay of my wardrobe and even more so when I travel. They pack up small, don't wrinkle, look great, and don't require washing while away. I also love belts because they don't take up much room but can change the look of an outfit with minimal effort.

I also label where everything goes so that I can see if I'm missing anything. It's always terrible to forget an essential item (I forgot my razor last summer when I went to Italy) so I find that by keeping like items together and laying it out I can spot gaps much easier.

I'll go in depth into what I pack for my makeup bag in another post. Hope this helps you get organized for future trips!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Insta Update

Lately on Instagram: book haul, smoked salmon and dill dip, subway stations, reading outdoors, packing and collar details.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013


Ok this was supposed to be a monthly favorites post. But I ran out of time with packing and battling my bank to get my currency (the day before I leave too, stress that was not needed). So instead sit back and enjoy this song by one of my favorite bands Capital Cities. I saw them live in May and it was amazing. We got to dance after the show with one of the singers and the guitarists and they were so nice and friendly.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Off to Japan!

I fly out tomorrow. The blog will (hopefully) still be updated (I've scheduled posts anyways) two times a week. I won't have the best internet access while over there but expect lots of photos when I get back!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Review: Stila Convertible Colour in Petunia

I picked up this blush from Stila recently to try out cream blushes. I had a hard time choosing which colour to get but my friend Christine from Starry Eyed Beauty recommended Petunia. Petunia is a pretty medium pink toned blush/lip colour that shows up nicely on my (very fair) skin.

I've tried applying this with my fingers, brushes, and my beauty blender and I have to say I like to apply it with a combination of my fingers (dotting it on) and then blending it out with my beauty blender. This gives me a very natural look. Using a brush with this doesn't seem to blend it in evenly.

While I do like this colour, I'm not 100% sold on cream blushes. I still need to play around with this before I invest in any others.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Review: Disney Collection A Whole New World Roller Ball

From Sephora's website:
Enchanting as magic itself, this alluring blend of exotic flowers and rich, warm woods is fit for a diamond in the rough. Empowering and seductive, this tempting fragrance will allow you to be the master of your own destiny. So go ahead, make your own magic. 
Notes: Carnation, Orange Blossom, Mandarin, Gardenia, Mimosa, Musky Accord, Cedarwood, Sandalwood, Vanilla, Amber, Benzoin.

I picked this scent up on a whim one day while I was at Sephora. I've been trying not to buy new fragrances until I use up some of the ones I already have but I make exceptions for roller balls because they're perfect for traveling and tend to be under the $30 mark.  I'm not normally a floral scent person but this one intrigued me. This is the only item from the Disney collections that I have bought, they just haven't piqued my interest.

The bottle is pretty; fuchsia gradient with gold details and the words make your own magic embossed on the side. I like that sentiment, the idea of being in charge of your own destiny and not leaving it up to chance.

For the most part I don't like floral fragrances because the tend to be too big. They overpower the person wearing them. This could be largely because people tend to spray floral fragrances liberally which therefore results in a headache whenever I'm around them. Because this is in a roller ball version it stays close to the skin which I much prefer to being a walking talking garden that assaults people with scent. The sandalwood and vanilla mellow out the floral notes and bring them down to a pleasant (to my nose at least) level. 

This is going into my bag to come with me to Japan. I'm not sure what other fragrances I'll bring with me but I'll be sure to keep you updated!

Friday, June 21, 2013

FOTD # 1

I thought I'd share something different with you today. This is a look I wore to go for lunch with friends, it's simple and pretty. I used my Stila Convertible colour in Peony for the first time and I really like it. I have yet to perfect the art of applying cream blushes but I'm working on it.

I love the eyes on this look, simple and bronze. I've started to mix my Naked and Naked 2 palettes to create some looks, in this one I used Chopper from the Naked 2 palette with Buck and Darkhorse form the Naked palette. I love doing bronze looks in the summer because they really make my green eyes pop.

Products used:
Urban Decay Primer Potion
Urban Decay Naked Palette
Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette
Urban Decay 24/7 Liner in Zero
Maybelline Falsies Flared in Blackest Black
Shiseido Perfect Refining Foundation in I20
Benefit Boi-ing concealer in 01
Nars Laguna Bronzer
Stila Convertible Colour in Peony
Dior Shimmer Powder in Amber Diamond
Revlon Lip Butter in Candy Apple

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Drugstore Haul!

 On the weekend I had a chance to take advantage of a friends employee discount at a drugstore that carries some high end products (30% off? Yes please!) I restrained myself from going too crazy (because I happen to get 20% off as a mall employee at this location) and stocked up on a few items.

First up is my beloved Bioderma which came in a two pack for $30 (normally retails for around $24 in Canada) so this was a great steal. I love this cleanser and so far no other micellar water has held up to it's lofty standards (look for a review/comparison coming soon of the Avene version) This is a  great cleanser for sensitive skin.

Next up is Urban Decay's Naked Basics palette. I own both Naked and Naked2 but thanks to Essie Button I was talked into this one. Also at 30% off I couldn't resist. The packaging is compact and perfect for weekend trips. This has a guaranteed spot in my makeup bag for Japan. I also picked up another Urban Decay Potion Primer. This will be my third tube of the stuff in approximately 2 years and so far it's the only primer I've found that has worked for me... mind you I haven't tested that many.

Next up is the Urban Decay Smoked palette. This one I hemmed and hawed over because it's not practical like the Naked Basics. I had Evasion used on me when I had my makeup done at Sephora a month ago and fell in love with this palette. I figured I'd take the plunge with the extra 10% discount. This comes with a full sized perversion liner and a mini potion primer which I am so glad about, totally taking it to Japan. The salesgirl also convinced me to buy Urban Decay's grindhouse. At $12 it's not a huge investment and she really sold it to me by making the case that other sharpeners tend to chew up Urban Decay's 24/7 liners. At $23 per liner I want to make them last as long as possible so I figured this was a safe purchase.

Finally I picked up Stila's Convertible Colour in Petunia. I've eyed these a few times and my friend Christine at Starry Eyed Beauty raves about them. I texted her the night before and asked her opinion on which one to get between Lillium and Petunia and she told me to get Petunia. I've never used cream blush before so I can't wait to try this out.

This will (hopefully) be the last haul (excluding what I buy in Japan - vacations don't count) until Sephora's VIB sale in the winter. I think two palettes and a blush should tide me over until then. 

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

New Site Design

I didn't plan to rework the site design this morning but somehow I was inspired. I'm happy with this simple design after much tweaking and hope you guys enjoy it too.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Bad Blogger!

Image from weheartit
I have been a bad blogger for a very long time. I think I was trying to hard to do YouTube videos when I really wasn't that into it. It made me feel self conscious because I live at home and didn't want anyone to find out so I had to try and film in secret which took all the fun away from it. I've decided to focus on blogging. I'm going to try to incorporate more fashion into the blog with outfit posts (hopefully once a week) and some inspiration posts in addition to all the beauty posts readers are used to seeing. Even when school starts in September I'll be able to blog because I have gotten my schedule down to two days a week! This means I'll have more time to blog and work, which means more money, which means more goodies for me to play with!

Excitingly I leave in two weeks to go to Japan for three weeks. I'm going to be staying a suburb of Tokyo and will be teaching while I'm there. I'm so excited for this experience and I'll do some posts about packing/whats in my travel makeup bag. I'll also try to keep the blog updated with travel posts while I'm there. I'm really excited to try out some Japanese beauty products as well (Shisedo dream whip, Hakuhodo brushes, Yojiya brushes and makeup!) which I'll post a haul of when I get back.

I'm so glad to be back to blogging and thank you for your patience while I have been a negligent blogger.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Bout of Books read-a-thon 7.0

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 13th and runs through Sunday, May 19th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 7.0 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team

I've been getting  a bit slower in my reading (too much of a social life) so I'm excited to challenge myself to read more next week! Are you participating? Message me on twitter (@nineteenoone) and we can cheer each other on!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Florence 2012: Climbing to the top of The Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore

On our second day in Florence we climbed to the top of the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore. Over 300 meters high with over 400 steps this was a huge trek for our jet lagged bodies. We woke up fairly early and started the climb around 9am so thankfully it wasn't crowded or too hot. If you want to do the same climb I'd highly recommend it but make sure you go early in the day, otherwise the lineups are just insane. The Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore was built in the 15th century, with the dome being created by Brunelleschi who used  Roman techniques to create it.

On the way to the top you get some amazing views of the frescos at the top of church. These were created by Vasari in the 16th century and depict typical scenes found in many churches: heaven and hell. Honestly in Florence you will be INUNDATED with beautiful artwork and it all begins to blur together. It is totally ok if you don't remember all of it, try to pick out your favorite pieces and hold onto those. 
 Once you get to the top the views of the city are fantastic, this is a shot of the Santa Maria Nouvella that I took from the top. You can get a panoramic view of the city which is great early on in your trip to give you an idea of how the city is laid out.
I would not recommend this for anyone who has a fear of heights, the drop to the bottom is very far and once you start going up it is very hard to turn around. The stairs to get up are very narrow and hard to climb so make sure you're in (reasonably) good shape.
 Unfortunately at the top there is a great deal of graffiti that people have put up. Mostly banal, on occasion you do get some gems like the one above.

 There are locks at the top, so if you want to leave behind a memento I think this is a nice way to do it.

I don't look back on my time in Florence and remember all the partying we did. Don't get me wrong, it was a lot of fun and we met some great people. Instead it's things like climbing up to the top of
the duomo that stand out in my memory.

Monday, April 29, 2013

What to wear on long haul flights

airport essentials

airport essentials by alysiamansfield featuring real leather handbags

Long haul flights can be a bit of a trial, so make sure you dress comfortably. I tend to start with a base of my lululemon wunderunders (you can wear any leggings though), a camisole with a built in bra (makes sleeping so much more comfortable), a cardigan or sweater (I'm fond of these TNA hoodies and these wilfred sweaters), a pair of slip on shoes (I'm loving these Toms), a bag big enough to hold my in flight essentials (Longchamp bags are great, or you can get a similar bag from ebay fro $20), and an empty water bottle is a must have so I can fill it up past security. I also make sure to pack any tech that I would be heartbroken to loose (like my cameras). 

While dressing up for a flight is great if it's under 5 hours, when you're going overnight comfort needs to be the primary concern.  

Friday, January 18, 2013

$$$ or $

Hey guys sorry for the absence the holidays were very hectic and then it was straight back to school with no rest! I need to come up with a good name for this series I'm starting on the blog where I find high end stuff and their cheaper (but just as good) counterparts! Any suggestions?

Starting off is this adorable Tory Burch Fox Stud Double Wrap Bracelet which retails for $125 (on sale for $87.50). Even on sale this is a hefty price tag for something that's more whimsy than classic. Also I'm not a huge fan of the patent and the colour choices leave something to be desired.

So I turned to my favorite website when sourcing handcrafted goods and searched for 'fox bracelet' and found this on the 4th page (Etsy tip: surf with patience, sometimes you don't find this for a while). At $18.95 this bracelet by AllAboutMyJewlery is a great alternative, plus comes in black, brown, red, blue, and orange. I'll post pictures once it arrives and let you know how the quality is.