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MONTHLY FAVOURITES

July & August Favourites

Seriously, how is it September tomorrow? Can we just have 5 more minutes of summer, pleeeaaasseee? I know I am not alone when I say the summer flew by! So fast, in fact, that I totally forgot to publish my July faves post! I honestly feel like I blinked once and now it’s Labour Day weekend.

As much as I love summer, I am a huge sucker for fall. Colourful trees, chunky sweaters, pumpkin-spice everything. It almost makes living in our crazy Toronto climate worth it…almost. But seeing as it is still hot out and slightly light out (unless you’re me and wake up at 5 am), I am going to hang on to summer for a few more moments and give a list of the products that I absolutely loved using in July and August.

Favourite Beauty Hack:

5 Minute Face Kit by Haley Bogaert Face

The insanely talented Haley Bogaert has done my makeup so many times for different events, including my wedding, and every single time she does it, I’ve just never felt prettier. So when she came out with her own makeup line, I knew it was going to be genius. I had the pleasure of trying out her 5 Minute Face Kit this summer and now it is my go-to not just for every day, but for special events as well. Available in light, medium and dark shades, the complete kit comes with blush, lipstick, eyeliner, bb cream, highlighter, a flat brush and brow gel, which Haley is famous for. With a quick and easy application of these key products, you can achieve a fresh and glowy look in no time. This is perfect for the on-the-go person like myself and with the cutest packing, it makes for the perfect gift.

Favourite Pantry Staple:

Trader Joes Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend

I know photos of this little bottle of seasoning have been flooding your Instagram lately, but it is for good reason. It actually tastes exactly like an everything bagel. I have been putting it on pretty much anything savoury these days; from eggs to avocado toast to salad. I’m a huge fan of spices as they are an easy and calorie-free way to add a ton of flavour to your meal without the use of heavy, sugary sauces. We don’t have Trader Joes in Canada so I picked up a bottle last time I was in New York. Now if there was only a way to make an actual calorie-free bagel for me to eat!

Favourite Face Mask:

Origins Flower Fusion Sheet Masks

Just like a bouquet of flowers, Origins has created a face mask for any occasion. If your skin is dry, go for the rose. If it’s oily, try the orange-radiance. Too much sun? Try the lavender. These no-mess masks are super easy to apply and work quickly. Best part is you actually see the results right away. Also, if you are a sucker for cute packaging, then these masks don’t stand a chance against you. I love masks in the summer as the warmer months are pretty harsh on my skin. Between the sweat and sun and I also love giving my face some extra TLC and a mask is one of the easiest ways to do it.

Favourite Purse Staple:

Dr. Bronner’s Lavender Organic Hand Sanitizer 

 

I have been looking for a good, clean hand sanitizer for a while. It sort of sounds like an oxymoron though. How can something that clean really kill bacteria off our hands? Well, the answer is, I’m not sure how clean it really is. I mean, the hand sanitizer only has three ingredients: ethyl alcohol, water and essential oils so I’d say it’s a pretty good option. I use it often as I am always in my car, using my phone, handling equipment at different gyms, touching clients’ sweaty bodies – you get the picture. So I keep one in my car and one in my purse. My favourite thing about this is the smell, though. Anything with laender immediately calms me down and, I’m not going to lie, sometimes I just spray it and breath it in (is that really bad?) if I’m having a stressful moment in the car and can’t reach my roll-on essential oils fast enough. 

Favourite Hair Product:

Redken Pillow Proof Blow Dry Dry Shampoo

You may know I just had the chance to try this product only about a week ago but I have used it almost every day and am kind of obsessed. Here’s the deal. Redken came out with a dry shampoo that has dark pigment in it. What does that mean? For all of us dark-haired ladies, it won’t leave a white residue at the tops of our head! Can I get an amen? I also learned something interesting about dry shampoo in general. Did you know that, like a deoderant, you are supposed to apply it before you go workout or do whatever it is that’s going to mess up your fresh hair? I had no clue. For me personally, since I wash my hair a lot due to the constant working out and sweating situation, I have been applying it to my just washed and dried hair, before I style it. Not only do I get a good amount of volume but I also find it helps prevent it from getting greasy faster. 

 

 

 

June Favourites

I’ve just returned from a week-long trip to Iceland which is why this post is a little late going up. Actually, it feels like my past few ‘Monthly Favourites’ posts have started with some excuse as to why they are late going up on the blog. It’s funny how when you quit your 9-5 job to pursue fitness and blogging you find it hard to make the time to write and workout.

Anyhow, I will soon be putting up a blog post all about Iceland and I’m so excited to share more about the trip with you. But before I do that, I need to first tell you about all my go-to products for the month of June:

Favourite Skincare Product:

Desert Essence Natural Tea Tree Oil Facial Cleansing Pads

When I was in Miami, Bianca introduced these pads to me while we were grocery shopping at Whole Foods. I was complaining to her about my bad breakouts and how I thought they were from constantly sweating and not having time to properly cleanse my face in between teaching classes and training clients. I purchased the 50-pad package and tried them out at after a boxing class. I then continued to use them while we were lying out in the sun and then traveling back home on the plane. Now they come everywhere with me. Each pad contains herbal extracts and essential oils combined with tea tree oil that is considered an antiseptic plant. You can feel the pads working their magic right away as they leave your face tingly and cool. I am completely addicted to them. I still wash my face after a workout but I will use these pads after I cleanse and then throughout the day for an extra boost. 

Favourite Hair Product:

Garnier Fructis Moisture Lock 10-IN-1 Rescue 

I went through a phase this year where I decided there was no point in washing my hair because it was just going to get sweaty the next day. But then my skin was getting bad and I was having to constantly change my pillow case and I just never felt that clean. So now I’m back to washing it a lot. I haven’t quite figured out my “hair schedule”  but what makes me feel good right now is a daily wash. If you’re a stylist or a hair person, I know you are probably cringing right now. Sorry! Anyhow, my hair is of course drying out a lot due to the over-shampooing so I’ve resorted to using Garnier’s Moisture Lock 10-in-1 detangler after I shower. I spray it over my ends and for the most part, just let my hair air dry. It smells incredible, which is what got me hooked at first. But it also does not leave my hair greasy at all and protects it from heat damage when I do get to styling it with an iron later in the day. I also brought it with me to Iceland and it proved to save my hair as I didn’t pack my own shampoo or conditioner (I know, you’re cringing again) and hotel products just don’t cut it. 

Favourite Workout Accessory:

Nike Hyperfuel Water Bottle

Finally! A water bottle that is perfect for working out. I know this may seem like a strange product to pick but I have been through dozens of water bottles and, for workout purposes, they just never seem to quite get it right. Swell’s are amazing because they keep the water cold but try unscrewing those caps in the middle of teaching a spin class. There’s just no way to make that look cute. I got to try this Nike water bottle at an event a few weeks ago and (unless I lose it, which is super likely to happen) I cannot see myself working out with anything else. First of all, it holds just under a liter of water. Way more than the average bottle. Secondly, there is no cap. Just squeeze and suck. (Get your mind out of the gutter). Lastly, no leakage. It’s kind of like the Dairy Queen thing where you turn your Blizzard upside down to see if the ice cream falls out. Well, in this case, the water stays in. They aren’t the cutest looking bottles, like My BKR, and they are plastic (the horror!) but as long as they are reusable I think it’s a fair deal. 

Favourite Gift Idea:

Fab Fit Fun 

I posted about my summer box from Fab Fit Fun on Instagram a couple of days ago but I wanted to give a little more information on it. It is a quarterly subscription service that sends boxes each season filled with full-sized samples of products in the health, wellness, beauty and fashion sphere. I’ve received two so far and fell for every item in the box. Whether it’s a new exfoliating face scrub, a pair of earrings or package of protein powder, Fab Fit Fun is on point with their curating skills. I’m not the biggest beauty or fashion buff so I love receiving new products in those industries as I rarely go out and buy new makeup or non-workout clothes. For example, in this past summer box they included a highlighter and bronzer that is already a staple in my “beauty routine.” After I posted about my spring box, several people told me they ordered a subscription for someone else as a gift and I think that is the best idea! It’s more personal and creative than a gift card and takes the guessing game out of what to actually get someone. Plus it will be the gift that keeps on giving. I have a code ‘KALE’ that will get you $10.00 off your first box. If you use my code, I do receive a very small affiliate commission, just to be completely honest with you, but I want to spread the love on these boxes anyways because I love getting them and really think they are an amazing gift option! 

 

 

May Favourites

The fact that I’m only getting this blog post up now pretty much sums up all of May for me. It has been one crazy busy month. Actually, it’s really been one crazy busy year! These days I pretty much feel like I’m just keeping my head above water but that’s what you get for starting your own business. I also believe that if I didn’t feel like I was drowning, failing and riding a roller coaster all at once than I’m probably doing something wrong because this is what everyone told (read warned) me about being an entrepreneur. So this month’s ‘Faves’ post is all about the products and hacks that are keeping me alive and well during this insane time in my life. 

Don’t forget to scroll all the way to the bottom for your chance to win one of my fave products!

Favourite skincare product:

Tata Harper Hydrating Floral Essense

I had the luxury of trying out and then getting to take home this spray only last week but have used it multiple times a day, every day since then. This miracle mist both moisturizes and hydrates the skin as it contains similar ingredients found in Tata’s well-known serums. I love that it can be applied on a fresh face or over makeup. Personally I’ve been using it later in the afternoon when I feel tired and in need of a little pick me up. I can definitely see this mist becoming my new favourite travel partner as well. 

Favourite healthy snack:

Chocolate Quinoa Coconut Nagi Bar

Although there are so many raw and vegan products on the market, it is actually rare to find a protein bar that fits within that criteria but still contains a good amount of protein and does not contain 20g of sugar. I was definitely surprised when I saw Nagi bars had 12 grams of protein and only 9 grams of sugar. I was even more surprised to find out how good they taste – especially the chocolate quinoa coconut flavour. I also really like the texture. It’s more chewy similar to a Lara bar and does not have any artificial aftertaste to it.  I also love that they are made in Canada and the founder Justyna is Polish (I’m half Polish) so these bars and I were pretty much meant to be.  

Favourite wellness hack:

Detox Water

I should really call this “spa” water because let’s be honest, you can’t actually detoxify your body by drinking naturally flavoured water however it does have a nice ring to it and there are so many benefits as well. Right now I am really into filling up a massive mason jar of water and throwing in half a lemon, one third of a large cucumber and a handful of fresh mint. Each ingredient has it’s own glorious benefits. While you make think of lemons as being acidic, they are actually one of the most alkaline-forming foods which helps to balance the acidity in our bodies.  Then we have cucumbers that are filled with tons of vitamins and minerals which are amazing for our skin and lastly mint is so good for our digestion. I make my jar at night and store it in the fridge so the water is really flavourful in the morning. I will then drink it first thing, before my coffee so I know I’m off to a great start.

Favourite new workout gear:

Joe Fresh Floral Active Popover 

June gloom has been real here in Toronto thanks to Mother Nature. It’s so easy to let the grey skies get the best of you but one trick that has been working for me is adding a pop of colour to my wardrobe. Whether it’s a neon colour sports bra, a bright sneaker or a fun pattern jacket like this purple floral piece from Joe Fresh, adding some brightness to my regular all black attire has certainly been mood boosting. I’m pretty much always in black leggings and either white or black running shoes so I love that this jacket goes with my normally neutral wardrobe. It’s pretty much impossible to be in a bad mood when you’re decked out in florals. (Photo from joefresh.com)

Favourite workout recovery product:

SKINORD muscle warming + cooling cream

While I don’t think you can replace a proper warm up and a good stretch pre and post workout, sometimes you need an extra boost in the recovery department, especially on those leg days. Lately I’ve been using Skinord’s muscle warming cream before my workout and cooling cream after, on the days where I know I am going really hard in the gym. I’m one of the people who really suffer from DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness). You know that day 2 feeling where you have to hold on to both sides of the toilet seat to sit down and get back up? That always happens to me.

Skinord uses only natural ingredients such as essential oils and vitamins to replicate the processes that occur in the body during warm ups and cool downs. For example the wintergreen oil in the warming cream helps increase blood flow and the peppermint in the cooling cream aids in soothing the muscles.

Best part is their products are produced right here in Toronto! And even better? Skinord is giving one of you lucky readers your very own set of pre and post workout creams. All you have to do is leave a comment letting me know the exercise that makes you the most sore! For me it’s always lunges. Winner will be announced on Friday via Instagram – good luck!