Monday, April 29, 2013

IT'S TRUE WHAT THEY SAY





Jeans: American Apparel Easy Jean in Indigo
Top: Forever 21
Denim Top: Ebay
Necklace: Pinkfire Designs

These jeans are back on the blog! Surprise surprise.

I wore this outfit last week Thursday to work... we were having a concert so I kept it pretty casual. I went out with some volunteers and one of the guys from the band afterward, and I stayed out reeeeeally late. I had a blast though, so it was worth it!

I did this fun nail art design last week, and after about day two it started to chip really badly. And uhhhh my nails/skin around my nails looks AWFUL. I really need to do something to take better care of that.

I hope everyone has an awesome Monday!

xo Raquel

Sunday, April 28, 2013

White Chocolate Crème Brûlée


By far, my favourite dessert to make - and eat - is crème brûlée. Two years ago, my good friends/sistas Sam and Kara, bought me a torch for my birthday. It's so hard to not love to make something when fire is involved!

I experiment a lot with different flavours... I typically make the classic most of the time (using real vanilla bean, not extract, of course!) but once in awhile I'll try something else out. I've made espresso, pumpkin, and now most recently, white chocolate.

If you're interested in the recipe, keep reading below! I used the Ghirardelli Classic White Crème Brûlée recipe on Martha Stewart.

Start by separating your egg yolks from the whites, then mix the yolks with sugar. 

Chop your white chocolate into smaller pieces - I used Bakers brand. 

Bring your cream to a simmer in your saucepan, then you can add in the white chocolate and whisk until it's thoroughly melted together.

Very slowly, add your egg yolks and sugar mixture. You'll want to temper it by adding some of the hot cream mixture to the egg yolks first, so that you don't end up with scrambled eggs!

Once it's all whisked together, separate the mixture into your ramekins, place them in a cake pan, and surround it with boiling water, going halfway up the sides of the ramekin. 

After you take them out of the oven, you'll want to let them cool down, then place them in the fridge for 3-4 hours. Just before serving, take them out of the oven, and add sugar to the top. 

Here's the fun part! Burn the sugar on top! If you don't have a kitchen torch, you can also place them under the broiler in your oven for the same effect. 

Doesn't this look fun?


After you have successfully burned the sugar on each dessert, place them in the fridge for another 2 minutes before serving!


Ingredients
4 large egg yolks, at room temperature
⅓ cup plus 4 teaspoons granulated white sugar
2 cups heavy cream
4 ounces Ghirardelli White Chocolate baking bar, broken or chopped into 1-inch pieces
½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract


Directions
Preheat the oven to 300°F.

In a medium bowl, whisk egg yolks with ⅓ cup sugar until smooth.

In a medium saucepan, bring the cream to a simmer over medium-high heat. Add the white chocolate. Turn off the heat and whisk until the white chocolate is melted. Add 2 tablespoons of the white chocolate mixture to the egg yolk mixture, whisking continually to prevent the eggs from scrambling. Add the remaining white chocolate mixture to the egg yolk mixture. Whisk until smooth. Add the vanilla.

Pour into four 6-inch ramekins or custard cups. Place the cups in a 9 by 13-inch baking pan. Add enough hot water so the cups sit in 1 to 1½ inches of water.

Bake for about 45 minutes, until set. Allow to cool, then refrigerate the custards until chilled. Before serving, sprinkle the tops of each ramekin with 1 teaspoon of sugar and place under the broiler until caramelized, 3 to 4 minutes. Rechill in refrigerator for 5 minutes before serving.

Friday, April 26, 2013

SPRING HAS SPRUNG




Top: Forever 21
Skirt: La Vie Lente
Belt: Only
Lipstick: MAC - Pink Nouveau

I'm super stoked today. It finally feels like spring. We hit 18 degrees (Celsius) today! Now if only the wind would subside everything would be perfect.

I'm going to see Chubby Checker tomorrow night with my parents, and I'm pretty excited about that. Haaah I think it will be a lot of fun!

xo Raquel

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

DANCE LIGHTLY





Batwing Top: Zara
Scarf: Vero Moda
Necklace: Pinkfire Designs
Shoes: Aldo
Lip Colour: MAC - Plumful

Oh boy. I'm living in Easy Jeans. They're just so easy to wear every day, especially when we are in that awkward in-between temperature right now. It's nice out, but not nice enough to be bare legged. I got this batwing top from Zara the other day when I was placing my order for the Office City Bag, just because I figured I needed some basic tees for summer. I'm not in love with it, and had I tried it on in store I probably wouldn't have purchased it, but it's starting to grow on me now, and I think I can picture a few ways I will be wearing it this summer.

I hope you're having a great Tuesday!

xo Raquel

Monday, April 22, 2013

LA DE DA



Striped Top: Vero Moda
Boots: H&M

I'm not usually one to get into the habit of wearing something over and over again after I buy it... until this bag! It is seriously the best bag for work, and I know it will be for school too. It fits all of my essentials, and then some! It does get a tad heavy though, so don't be surprised if I start complaning about shoulder pain in the near future. ;)

Another thing I've been wearing every day? Easy Jeans. Having them in three different colours really allows me to wear them every day without looking like a fool. I've been experimenting with them a lot, and I can really feel that they will become a closet staple of mine.

The snow is almost all gone! It snowed again over the weekend (what the heck, right?) but most of that has melted, and now we are just left with a few patches and a few banks... but I'm thinking I'll be wearing dresses (with no tights!) before the end of the week. Mark my words!

Have a lovely Monday!

xo Raquel

Thursday, April 18, 2013

BACK TO BASICS 2






Jeans: American Apparel Easy Jean in Indigo
Top: Zara
Jacket: ONLY
Necklace: Tonic
Shoes: Call it Spring
Bag: Zara Office City Bag
Lipstick: MAC Viva Glam Nicki

I'm starting school again in only a short 2.5 months, so I thought it was time I treated myself to a new bag, as the ones I had been toting around the university were getting slightly tattered. After much deliberation (and the sudden opening of shipping to Canada!) I decided to go with the Zara Office City Bag. I'm going to graphic design school right away, so it will be the perfect bag for me. It has a middle compartment that is padded, perfect for my 13-inch Macbook Pro. It also has a padded iPad case, which will come in handy, because we will not be using textbooks in school, as everything will be on an iPad for us. I'm so excited to start this new chapter.

I felt like I couldn't only order the bag, so I also ordered three basic Ts. This is my favourite one! I don't have much for polka dots in my wardrobe, so I'm glad I got this top.

I was in Saskatoon this past weekend (that's where I went to university, and spent 4.5 living there!) and I went straight to American Apparel for some new jeans! I decided I wanted some high-waisted jeans because my others were just too low. I love the way my disco pants and riding pants fit, that I thought they would be the perfect jeans for me. I was so excited to see that they were buy 2 get 1 half off... so of course I bought three pairs! I also got them in black and zinfandel.

The fit of them is similar, but still quite different from the riding pants and disco pants. I guess it would be most similar to the disco pants... The girl working though, suggested that I get them in a size smaller than my disco pants, as they will stretch out after wearing them. My riding pants are XL, my disco pants are L, and now I got all three pairs of the easy jean in M! I could barely breathe, but after wearing them for a day, I'm finding them perfect now! I'm glad I sized down, because the knees were pretty baggy on the L, and I hate baggy knees!

I hope everyone has had a great Thursday! Thanks for stopping by!

xo Raquel

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Rimmel Lipsticks: Amethyst Shimmer & Dizzy




Since moving away from a city with MAC and Sephora I've been finding myself heading over to the drugstore a lot more to buy new makeup. I saw in a Shoppers Drug Mart flyer that selected Rimmel face and eye products would be on sale for $3.99 this week, and I couldn't pass up the opportunity to try out some products that I wouldn't normally try while the prices were reduced.

I decided to go with two relatively safe colours: Amethyst Shimmer and Dizzy. I don't normally go for shimmery lipsticks - I tend to like a more matte finish - I rarely wear any lipgloss, either. Since the prices were reduced I decided to try out the shimmery colours anyway.

Amethyst Shimmer is a really nice pinky-violet colour that I feel would like amazing on many skin tones. In the winter I'm quite pale, but I'm able to get significantly more tan in the summer time, and I feel like it will be a lip colour that can transition well from season to season. The finish I found to be quite silky, creamy, and lush. I love this colour!

Dizzy is a very nice pink colour that I feel will go great with any makeup face: smokey eyes or neutral eyes! It has the same type of nice finish that I found with Amethyst Shimmer. It has some really pretty mauvey undertones in it. I think this could very well be my everyday-spring-lip colour winner!

I think I might head back to Shoppers Drug Mart before the sale ends to try a few more colours. It's too bad the Kate Moss lip colours aren't part of the sale!

Have you tried many Rimmel lipsticks? Do you have any recommendations?

Thanks for reading!

xo Raquel


Monday, April 1, 2013

MARCH 2013 FAVOURITES


I've been using Soap & Glory Scrub 'Em And Leave 'Em a few times a week in the shower lately, and it has been making my skin feel so nice! I have pretty dry skin - especially in the colder months - and it has been removing all of my dead skin, and leaving me with nice, supple skin. I would definitely recommend this product to anybody who needs an extra little bit of exfoliation. After getting out of the shower, I have been using the Soap & Glory The Righteous Butter Body Lotion. I wasn't expecting it to be extremely moisturizing, because it's quite light... but oh my, was I pleasantly surprised! It has a really nice finish that dries super quickly, and leaves your skin incredibly moisturized! The smell is great too... a nice musky and florally scent. I used to hate anything with a hint of floral, but I have been loving this one!

I've been going through my Moroccan Oil  hair oil quite quickly lately, so I decided I needed to try something less expensive, to see if it would do the trick! I saw the Garnier Fructis Sleek & Shine Moroccan Sleek Oil Treatment (the name is sure a mouthful!) in the grocery store, and I decided to give it a whirl! I have to use a little bit more than I would of my salon brand one, but it has really been taming down my frizz and leaving my hair with a nice finish! A good product for the price.


For some reason, I can never seem to cover and conceal my dark, puffy under eye circles. I found the Physicians Formula Gentle Cover Concealer Sticks in 'Yellow' and 'Light' at the drugstore for only $4 for the two-pack, and they have been working wonders at concealing my under eyes! I would definitely recommend them if you are having a similar problem.

Four years ago I worked as a receptionist and graphic designer at a spa, and became addicted to the brand Eminence Organics. After finishing working there, and no longer getting products at cost, I couldn't afford my addiction anymore! At Christmas time my mother was having a tough time trying to figure out what to buy me, but saw on Facebook that I 'liked' the brand, so she went out and purchased me a few of the products! I hadn't tried the Eminence Organics Sour Cherry Whip Moisturizer before, but I am so in love with it now. It has a wonderful scent, and leaves my skin feeling incredibly hydrated. They are quite expensive products, but the nice thing about them is that you don't need to use very much product. I have the travel sized one, and I have been using it 1-2 times per day since Christmas, and I still have over half of it left. When you don't need as heavy of an application you can emulsify the product with a few drop of water to make it go a little bit further. There is no added water in the formula, so it really goes a long way. If you haven't tried any Eminence products before, and you like to use high-end skin care products, I would definitely recommend them!

My go to blush, in anticipation of spring time weather, has been MAC Frost Powder Blush in 'Style'. It's a very nice orangey-corally-pinkey colour that works really well with my skin tone. It has a nice finish, and gives my face a more fresh look.

I bought the Benefit POREfessional primer and have been using it daily all month long! It's pretty expensive, I find, but I don't need to use very much product. I only use it on my cheeks, where my pores are quite large. It has such a nice silky texture - it almost feels like velvet! I really have been loving it.

I have been using the Rimmel Wake Me Up Foundation nearly every day, because I have been trying to use less of my MAC foundations, saving them for more special occasions and not every day. I did a full review of it here.

I put off purchasing the Urban Decay Naked Palette for a long time, because I didn't want to give in to the hype. I totally regret that decision! I haven't been using any of my other eyeshadows lately, because the Naked Palette really contains all the colours I would possible need. It's totally worth the hype!


My mascara routine lately has been a few coats of the Rimmel Scandal Eyes then the Maybelline Falsies layered on top. Individually, I wasn't a big fan of either of them, but together they give my lashes the perfect finish: no clumps! I

For my lips I have been using either the Maybelline Color Whisper in 'A Plum Prospect' or the Revlon Lip Butter in 'Cherry Tart' during the day, depending on what I'm wearing. They are both really easy-wearing lip colours, with nice, moisturizing finishes. They are both very buildable, so I can easily achieve the colour I would like with just a few strokes.

In the evening when I go out, I have been loving the Revlon Just Bitten Lipstain + Balm in 'Flame'. It's a really pretty colour, and I can tell I will love using it for all of spring, and likely into summer. It stays on my lips for so long, so I don't need to worry about reapplying into the night. I definitely recommend trying out the formula!

--------------------------------------

So there you have it! Those are all the products I was reaching for this past month.

I'm really bummed out, because I filmed a video of all these products for my deserted YouTube channel as well, but when I transferred the files to my computer, I noticed it was just a touch out of focus the whole time... nothing major, but definitely annoying when trying to watch!

What have been your favourite products of the past month?

xo Raquel