Review- Goop Clean Beauty


Goop Clean Beauty

I have been a subscriber of goop since the beginning because I love Gwyneth Paltrow’s clean, crisp clothing style. Honestly- her uniform post from several years ago is still a go-to for me. I am still a subscriber but over the years as goop has developed as a “lifestyle” brand, I have certainly stopped being an avid reader. The problem that I have is the same as a lot of other people- the site just SMACKS of privilege; almost everything featured is insanely expensive and it seems out of touch with the lives of most women (steaming ones vagina?? Really??? That cannot be healthy)

When I was sent Goop Clean Beauty by the publisher, Hachette Book Group Canada, I was willing to attempt to look at it without any preconceived notions. It was January and who doesn’t love a good lifestyle book to start the New Year with? I was certainly curious if the book would be accessible to the 99% who aren’t Hollywood royalty….

My first impression of the book was how clean (no pun intended) and stylish the layout design was. It was like your favourite Instagrammer who uses a lot of flat-lay pictures- perfect and styled within an inch of its life. I did have to chuckle a bit that kale leaves were prominently featured on the dedication page.

While the credit for the book goes to the staff of goop, GP “curated’ the book so naturally the introduction was penned by her. In it, she extols the virtues of natural self-preservation and aging gracefully while feeling as good as possible both inside and out. So far I am on board. She addresses all the negative products in so many beauty products and stresses how bad “toxins” are for the body (this feels a bit like an ad for goop by Juice Beauty)

GP has gotten a lot of flack by members of the medical community about her detox cleanses and she clearly wants to clarify her position here by stressing that her detox focuses on clean eating (i.e eating nothing fun at all) and not juice cleanses or fasts. Thea Baumann (the resident goop chef), provides 24 recipes for clean eating, many of which look pretty yummy (I am for sure trying  the Steamed Fish with Dashi and Soba Noodles and all the chopped salads). However…. there is a recipe for hot water and lemon.. Seriously?

A list of superfoods and antioxidants are included here which is hardly new territory but its nice to have all the info in one place if you are into that sort of thing (I am sort of on the fence, personally)

Of course Tracey Anderson also shows. I am as envious as anyone of GP’s figure but Tracey’s “method” is not super feasible for me as much as I wish it were. (working out for an hour a day would be amazing if I had that sort of time)

One thing that I was very interested in was the section addressing supplements and foods that help with hair, skin and nails. I took some of the advice and started talking a Biotin and have noticed a difference with my hair, especially. The beauty section is very blunt about how skin and haircare products work and that the real permanent changes and improvements come from what you put in your body rather than what you put on it. YES! This was probably my favourite section.

The the section that focuses on hair styles and makeup is a bit silly, especially in the era of YouTube tutorials. How to do a cat eye and a ponytail? Huh?

Another section that I was really interested in was about sleep- about how much you need, how to get the most out of sleep, the importance of naps for adults (HA- vindication! I LOVE naps) and how lack of sleep can affect your body. I am working on implementing some of the suggestions in an attempt to feel more rested.

All in all, this book is a beautiful hard covered version of the goop website and while there are certainly some good recipes and references, it doesn’t exactly break new ground.

Also one more thing- Is adrenal fatigue a real thing?



** I was provided this book for review by Hatchette Book Group Canada. All opinions are solely my own.



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Favourite Things – January 2017

These are a few of my (January) favourite things!!!!
Favorites- January 2017


I See You by Clare Mackintosh– The perfect creepy read for a dreary January evening. Zoe sees a picture of herself in the classified section of the newspaper. Then she sees another woman’s picture… and that woman ends up dead….
Caspar Mattress– Our old mattress, while high end, was ten years old and both of us were waking up tired and sore every morning. We decided to try out the Caspar mattress and so fare we are super happy we did. Feeling less sore and tired every day! Also, many podcasts these days are sponsored by Caspar so there are lots of $50 discount codes out there.
MimiTENS “Mama” Hat– A lovely mum friend of mine gave me and another friend these hats for Christmas. I love that they say “mama” but they look totally badass. Mums can be cool too! #doesitcomeinblack
Mackage Card Case– I used to carry around a massive wallet that became a dumping ground for tons of crap. In my quest to streamline what I was carrying around in my bag, I asked my husband for a small card case style wallet and he chose this one (does he have great taste or what?)
MishMash Notebook– I saw a notebook by this Portugal based company in a vlogger’s video on Youtube. I checked out their site right away and fell in love with the stitched spines and unique paper quality. It wasn’t cheap (22 euros) but I love it so much. Blog planning and grocery lists were never so chic!
Michael Kors Boots– I saw a girl on the subway wearing these boots and they were exactly what I was looking for- cute toe, low heel, suede… I took a mental snapshot (I thought I would look like a creep taking a photo of someones feet on the TTC) and searched for them as soon as I could. The husband got them for me for Christmas. They as cute and comfortable as I had hoped!
Murad Advances Active Radiance Serum – Murad products are amazing but so expensive so they are a splurge for me. My mum gave this to me for Christmas and it really does make my skin glow and helps it retain so much more moisture.
Anthenay Mini Brass Bag– Another Christmas gift from the husband (I was totally spoiled this year). I was so surprised because I took a photo of the bag ages earlier at Zane (one of my favourite stores) and sent it to him… and then promptly forgot about it. Anthenay bags are locally made by hand in Toronto of really lovely structured leather. They are total works of art.
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I tried microbladding.

Getting out of the house looking decent in the morning can be challenging when you have a gaggle of kids hanging off your leg, even with a helpful spouse like I have. Spending too much time getting ready while the kids are tearing up the joint downstairs while my husband does his level best to wrangle is super stressful for me.

A few months ago, my friend Kat got her brows micro bladed  and I was CAPTIVATED. Her new and improved brows framed her face, were the perfect shape and semi- permanent! No pencils or powder required!

One night Kat and I were out for drinks with another friend Tina and Kat told us about a friend of a friend who was training to microblade and was looking for models to use.  Tina literally texted her the next day and I followed suit. I also convinced my sister-in-law to do it too!

We were both super nervous about the pain and permanence of the procedure ahead of time. As I do, I spent a lot of time researching microbladding and I started to get excited about the prospect!

My SIL and I arrives at Sonia Marques home studio on a fall afternoon totally unsure about the entire process. SIL went first (I was chicken). Sonia consulted with her about the shape that she wanted and mapped her brows with grease pencil (looked nuts) and then applied the numbing gel. After about 20 minutes, Sonia began applying the dye via a teeny tiny blade. Yes- basically a super sharp scalpel. The first couple of cuts hurt quite a bit but not as much as I was anticipating ( I guess after two pregnancies and two c-sections, my pain threshold has increased). Sonia re-applied the numbing gel several times over the course of the work, so it hurt less and less.

When we left her studio, SIL and I were laughing at our bonkers dark brows! You are not allowed to wash your face for 24 hours so there is a lot of dye still on there and then as the brows scab and oxidize, they get SUPER dark. Here is a picture of me the day after.


I felt super self-conscious about how dark they were but look at that SHAPE!! So boss!

By day five I was really feeling my brows, although they were still quite dark.


I have to say that while getting my brows microbladded was a totally vanity based decision, I am so glad that I did it. I feel put together with even the smallest amount of makeup on and I think they give my face angles that it didn’t have before (I am a total moon pie face girl).


I have not regretted my decision to micro blade once in the last three months. I even looked forward to my one month touch up because I wanted them even MORE defined in some places.

If you are interested in microbladding and have waited on pulling the trigger DO IT!

If you are in the Toronto area, contact Sonia Marques! She will hook you up.


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Hell0 2017! Best Agendas for a new year

I am a list maker. An planner. My life doesn’t function without multiple and extensive to-do lists. Three kids and a full time job sometimes requires a fill on spreadsheet!!!
If you are hoping to be better organized this year, here are some fantastic (and cute) agendas to help you get there.
Best Agendas 2017


Simplified Planner– This is the perfect choice for the most dedicated organizer. This agenda has weekly spreads and full monthly views. There are four sections: schedule, to do, notes and dinner.
Design Love Co– This is such a chic planner! I love the design SO much. This task based organizer is perfect for list makers. There are many great extras like budgeting and spending charts as well as tear-out pages.
Smythson– This is the must luxe agenda on my list. Made of leather (of course) this 14 month organizer has a week-to-view layout with note pages.
momAgenda– This is an awesome choice for the multitasking mother as it is perfect for balancing multiple schedules (mom plus up to four kids) There are weekly and monthly views and the AMAZING “Essentials pamphlet” where you can store important information about the entire family in one place.
Kate Spade– This is a classic and elegant choice. This 17 month agenda has monthly and weekly spreads and lots of rooms for notes.
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Holiday 2016- Velvet

We all know that ’90’s fashion is back in a big way and while I am not into much of the reboot (massive bellbottoms leave me cold) I am LOVING the resurgence of velvet as a wardrobe staple for the holidays! These are some of my fav pieces… seriously DROOLING over these boots!
Velvet for the Holidays


Jimmy Choo Boots (Currently on SALE)/ Anna Sui Dress/ River Island Jumpsuit/ Santoni Pumps/ River Island Dress (Sold Out- similar here/ Boohoo Bag (similar)
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Holiday 2016- Pretty in Pearl

Pearls are so elegant and elegance is the name of the game this time of the year. Pearl accessories elevate a simple LBD or even jeans and a teeshirt into something incandescent!
Here are some great pieces that I am coveting this December!
Holiday 2016- Pretty in Pearl


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No Baby Unhugged- November 17th is World Prematurity Day


When William and Charlotte came into the world a month early, they were in the NICU for 11 days due to infection and a need to develop a little bit more. It was so scary and nerve wracking to see them hooked up to machines in the islolets. My favourite time of the day was when I was able to take each baby out, careful of all their wires and monitors, to hold them close, nurse (or attempt to) them and just feel them in my arms. Sob… thinking back on this scary but special time still makes me tear up going on two years later.

November 17th is World Prematurity Day, a day to raise awareness of the high rates of prematurity across the globe.

When babies come into the world early, they are so fragile and vulnerable. Human touch and skin-to-skin contact are hugely important to newborn care development, in both the short and long term.

Skin- to- skin contact helps to improve sleep, regulate body temperature, improve oxygen levels and pain tolerance and improve brain development and so much more.

Huggies believes in the power of touch so much they created No Baby Unhugged, an initiative to make sure all babies get snuggled when when their mother cannot be there.

I was never in the hospital as much as I wanted to be- I was recovering from a c-section and trying to pump milk for two babies… how much more peace of mind I would have had if I knew that my babies were being held close when I was not there?

Through the No Baby Unhugged program, Huggies has provided $50,000 in funding to two Canadian hospitals, with more planned. To-date, Huggies has partnered with Cape Breton Regional Hospital in Sydney, Nova Scotia and Southlake Regional Health Centre in Newmarket, Ontario, offering funding to cover hugging chairs and stations, along with dozens of Hugger Volunteers in the NICU’s to help ensure all babies get the hugs they need. Over 600 babies are admitted to these hospitals each year, where hundreds of hours of care are offered by trained volunteers.

Take a look at the videos below featuring true stories captured at the these No Baby Unhugged hospitals, which show the reality of NICU care and how this initiative is helping families.


       Here’s What Hugs Can Do: No Baby Unhugged at Cape Breton Regional Hospital

       Miracle Hugs from No Baby Unhugged at Southlake Regional Health Centre

Show your support at When you do, Huggies will thank you for your support by sending you free Huggies Diapers!

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Five Minute Face- My Weekday Beauty Routine


I am trying a new ritual in the morning- instead of rushing out of the door for the school run and work with a bare face feeling like a frazzled mum not ready to face the day, I am working on refining a five minute face so I feel good when I leave the house.

 I recently hit the drugstore for some new products to make this challenge more fun (new things are ALWAYS more fun than old things as any kid will tell you).

Here is what I am currently playing around with:

 L’Oreal Paris Infallible Pro-Glow foundation– This foundation offers medium coverage and a nice dewey finish. Perfect for every day use.
Revlon Colorstay Concealer– I am prone to dark circles under my eyes and this concealer helps me look much more rested than I actually am.
Maybelline Master Contour Contour and Highlight Stick– I have lots of contouring products but this is so easy and fast it is perfect for a quick makeup routine.
essence Contour Powder– this compact contains both bronzer and highlighter to perfectly complement the stick.
Revlon Cream blush– A cream blush is super quick to apply, blends well and stays nice and fresh all day.
essence all about matt finishing compact powder–  a quick brush of this stuff makes my face stay put all day long.
Maybelline Brow Drama Pomade Crayon– Again, I have lots of brow enhancing products but this one is fast and precise to apply so it has become by daily go-to.
Covergirl  The Super Sizer Fibers mascara– Mascara is tricky for me because I don’t like waterproof but I hate smudging. After some online research, I decided to try this one out and it is pretty great!
Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Outlaw– I don’t wear this colour every day but I love it and wear it whenever I can. The formula is amazing and the colour lasts for HOURS!
Writing it out, it looks like A LOT of steps but it legit takes me five minutes!
What products do you use to create a five minute face?
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Podcast Round Up- Fall 2016

Podcast Favorites 2016


Since I went back to work and have over an hour commute everyday, I have been devouring podcasts, especially those that deal with the supernatural and true crime. Here is a round up of my favourites:

The Black Tapes – From Pacific Northwest Stories, “The Black Tapes” is a fictional docudrama about Dr Richard Strand, who’s Strand Institute works to debunk paranormal events. The host of the podcast, Alex Regan becomes completely entwined with Strand and the cases he has not been able to dismiss as false, dubbed his “Black Tapes”. This podcast is super addictive- you are going to wish your commute was longer.

Tanis– Another fictional podcast from Pacific Northwest Stories, reporter Nic Silver and his trusty hacker buddy Meerkatnip delve into the deep Web to investigate the mysterious myth behind the question of “What is Tanis?” I don’t want to say too much about this because it is so awesome to listen to this series unfold from the beginning. Anyone interested in the supernatural and mysterious events will LOVE this show. I have listened to every episode twice.

Sword and Scale– “Sword and Scale” is a true crime podcast with the tag line ” The worst monsters are real”. This show is super disturbing and often relies on real recordings from the cases explored. The gripping narration, meticulous research and super high production value makes this one of my favorite podcasts of all time.

Casefile True Crime– Probably my second favorite crime podcast is “Casefile”. The subject matter is very similar to “Sword and Scale” and is also very creepy. This show relies more heavily on host narration but it doesn’t render the subject matter any less gripping.

Unsolved Murders: True Crime Stories – This podcast take a cue from old time radio dramas. Famous unsolved murders are re-inacted by voice actors in order to animate the narrators stories. Cases investigated include the Black Dahlia and Bugsy Siegel.

Thinking Sideways – Thinking Sideways is a relatively new addition to my podcast library and is also crime related. It focuses on unsolved mysteries, such as Jack the Ripper, the disappearance of Agatha Christie. What makes it very different is that it takes a round table discussion format with the three hosts. It is a fun way to look at these mysteries although I occasionally find the hosts glib, especially when dealing with more recent crimes.

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