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Thursday, 31 March 2016

Lash Affair Lounge



Lash Affair Lounge



When I was pregnant with Emery, I had really wanted to get eyelash extensions before she arrived. I knew I wasn't going to have time/energy to want to do my makeup & thought it would be a nice treat. I never ended up getting around to it. 

When Derek & Heather, the owners of Lash Affair Lounge contacted me wanting to work together, needless to say I was pretty pumped. I could finally test out these bad boys and see if all my dreams of saving time & looking good would come true. My sister-in-law has eyelash extensions & she always raves about them, so I couldn't wait to see for myself. 

Before I left the house, I got my Mom to snap some photos of my brows & eyelashes before hand. Lash Affair Lounge not only offers eyelash extensions but they also offer brow couture services. Brace yourself for what you are about to see because it is scary, haha.. I was in clear need of a brow couture service.


Hustling out the door, leaving Emery in the caring hands of my Mom (or Granny Bino) as well call her can sometimes be stressful. E is a Mama's girl and sometimes has separation anxiety, so leaving her is hard. 

When I arrived at Lash Affair Lounge, I instantly felt relaxed. The space is absolutely beautiful and calming. I find a lot of salons/spas are not the classiest looking places, so this place is definitely a diamond in the rough. The ever so sweet Remington was the first to greet me and offered me a tea from their tea bar. Umm hello, a tea bar? Could this place get any better? *Spoiler alert, yes yes it can!*

Lash Affair Lounge is a family owned business, which is something I really adore. Supporting small family businesses is something I try to make an effort to do. The close knit staff at Lash Affair Lounge were super friendly and knowledgable. The manager, Chelsey has been there for a long time and knows her stuff. She not only manages the store but she's also a lash technician. She also made a point to come check in on me several times during my appointment, which I really appreciated.



Chelsea, my lash technician came and got me and brought me into the main part of the Lounge.
See these amazing lounge beds, you actually get to lay down on these while the girls transform your lashes. Chelsea was so sweet, and explained everything that she was doing. Applying the lashes is an amazing & complex treatment. She was telling me about how they get lots of clients who come in and need lash extensions removed. There are a lot of places who claim to know how to do lash extensions but they are not properly trained and can wreck your lashes. It's nice to know your in good hands at Lash Affair, and don't have to worry about that happening. Chelsea told me that lots of clients fall asleep while getting their lashes done. I thought, oh that won't happen to me. Haha, was I ever wrong! 

When Chelsea was done, I couldn't believe how natural and long they looked. They also felt so much lighter then I expected. She also explained to me how to take care of them, so they would stay looking marvellous. They recommend washing them everyday with lash friendly cleanser (which they carry at Lash Affair Lounge, along with lots of other lash friendly goodies) and to brush them out. 

Lash Affair Lounge

The best eyelash products

Lash Affair Lash Lounge

After Chelsea was done, I went over to the lash bar to get a brow couture treatment done by Regena. I don't if you have noticed but I usually have bangs covering my eyebrows. My eyebrows have always been out of control and I thought they never had a chance of looking good. I can't believe the magic Regena worked on my eyebrows. The shape she gave my brows is amazing. I never thought my eyebrows could look this good! She showed me how to fill them in, which I'm still working on perfecting the technique myself.



It's been a couple of weeks since I got my eyelash extensions and eyebrows done. It's honestly been so nice! I spend most mornings working out and always feel/look like such a slob after. Not to mention with a toddler running around, I have very limited time to get ready each day. Now that I have these amazing eyelash extensions it looks like I am wearing make up & I feel way more put together, with zero effort. If I want to feel a little extra bit sassy, I throw on some foundation, blush & some lipstick. In these photos below I'm just wearing foundation, blush and lipstick. No eye make up of any sort!

I can't sing enough praises about Lash Affair Lounge! Their amazing staff and service is something you #YEG people need to go check out!

Spring style

Eyelash extensions

Spring style

*This post was sponsored by Lash Affair Lounge. Thank you so much for supporting brands that support my blog and family.*












Monday, 28 March 2016

#10DaysofSmiles

NiveaQ10 Skincare

If you follow me on Instagram, you have seen that I have been participating in NIVEA Canada's #10DaysofSmile Instagram campaign. I've been sharing my happy moments with you to let you know that by smiling you can take years off your face. Studies conducted by NIVEAQ10plus have shown that the simple act of smiling can make you appear younger.

Happy  moments

To really combat those fine lines, I've been testing out the NIVEAQ10plus's line of products (along with those smiles). If you'll remember from this post, the Q10plus products feature the energy coenzyme Q10 which helps work with your skin to reduce the appearance of wrinkles.

Morning skincare routine

Morning skincare routine

I've actually been using the Q10plus anti-wrinkle serum pearls for about a year now. It's a product I love to use in the morning and before bed. It's light and makes your face feel incredibly smooth. I usually layer this with my NIVEAQ10plus SPF 30 moisturizing lotion in the morning, along with the Q10plus eye cream. 

The eye cream not only fights against wrinkles but also gradually minimizes the dark under eye-circles. Being a Mama and dark circles go hand in hand, so I am all about anything that helps with that.

If you've been reading my blog for awhile now, you will know what an advocate for SPF I am. It's so important to protect your skin from the sun. I really appreciate that this day cream from NIVEAQ10plus contains the Q10 coenzymes along with SPF, for extra protection. 

Morning skincare routine

Bedtime rituals

Bedtime tea

In the evening I usually like to wind down with some light reading, a cup of tea and a good night cream. The NIVEAQ10plus night care cream is amazing. It is thick and luxurious, and leaves your skin feeling really moisturized. I find that with a lot of night creams, the next morning my skin feels very dry. This is not the case with the NIVEAQ10plus night cream. When I wake up in the morning my skin still feels super moisturized. 

Bedtime tea

I highly recommend that you check the NIVEAQ10 plus line of products out. If you aren't happy with them or don't see visibly younger looking skin in four weeks, they will give you a refund. I love how they stand behind their products like that.

<3 Kastles




*This post was sponsored by NIVEA Canada. All opinions expressed are my own. Thank you for supporting brands that support me and my family.*





Thursday, 24 March 2016

Easy Vegan Brownies



Easy Vegan Brownies

I was really craving brownies the other week but I didn't want to feel bad about eating them. I have been making chocolate protein balls for awhile, and thought there must be something similar in brownie form. I surfed Pinterest for awhile till I came across Minimilast Baker's No Bake Vegan Brownies with Chocolate Ganache. These brownies are a dream. They are delicious, moist, chewy and addicting. This recipe will become a staple in your household for years to come. 

Easy Vegan Brownies

Easy Vegan Brownies

Easy Vegan Brownies

Easy Vegan Frosting

Ingredients:

Brownies
-1 cup + 1/2 cup of raw walnuts/pecans 
-1 cup raw almonds
-2 1/2 cup of pitted dates, (if dry soak them in warm water for 10 minutes)
-3/4 coco or cacao powder
-1/4 tsp sea salt

Frosting
-1/4 cup almond milk
-1 cup dairy free dark chocolate, chopped
-2 tbsp coconut oil, melted
-1+ cup powdered sugar
-1/4 sea salt

I changed the ingredients a bit from the original recipe. I've made these brownies both with walnuts and pecans, and both varieties were delicious. I also found using more icing sugar then she suggested made a thicker frosting. I didn't add in cacao nibs but I'm sure if you did they would taste great too. If you are using dry pitted dates, soak them in warm water as suggested. It really helps to add moisture to the brownies and makes for a better "dough".
Easy Vegan Brownies

Easy Vegan Brownies

Easy Vegan Brownies


For an extra treat, warm these brownies up the in the microwave for about 10 seconds and add a little vanilla coconut ice cream. So....good. Trust me, you will be so pleasantly surprised at these delicious brownies. Let me know if you give them a try! 

<3 Kastles
Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Kevin Murphy's REPAIR-ME

Kevin Murphy Restore Me

My sister-in-law first introduced me to Kevin Murphy's hair products. I have since then been a huge fan of his line. They always smell delicious and seem to work wonders with my crazy, naturally curly hair. My usual favourites are the Hydrate-Me.Wash & Rinse. Not to mention their packaging is superb. I'm always a sucker for cute packaging. 

Kevin Murphy Restore Me

The cutest little hands and sweetest little assistant. 

Kevin Murphy Restore Me Haircare

So naturally, I was pretty stoked to test out a few products from their new line. Enter the REPAIR-ME Line. These goodies are meant to help repair & reconstruct damaged hair. Coming from an avid flat iron fan, this was probably a good idea for my hair. 

Kevin Murphy Re.Store Hair

Upon opening these up, I was transported to a beach. Ok, not actually but you get my drift. They smell so deliciously tropical. I have been using this system for over a month, and I have to say my hair is looking/feeling a lot better. My favourite out of the three has to be the RE.STORE repairing cleansing treatment. When you hop in the shower, throw this treatment on for 2-3 minutes and rinse it out. You actually use it lieu of shampoo and conditioner & up to 2 times a week. My hair is so silky & smells divine after using this bad boy. 

Toddler style

See even Em is feeling the tropical vibes.

In all honesty, I would definitely recommend investing in this system if your hair is a little too deep fried for your liking.

What are your favourite Kevin Murphy products?

<3 Kastles


Monday, 21 March 2016

Four Eyes Chic

Breakast in bed
Above details: Michael Kors tortoise shell reading glasses c/o Pearle Vision, Joe Fresh t-shirt, sweats & socks c/o, Vintage vase,  Target tray, Anthropologie monogram mug, Kate Spade NY bow earrings
Tea time

I'm embarrassed to admit this but I haven't had my eyes checked in over 10 years, okay actually longer than that. Over the last little while, I've been getting pretty bad migraines. It mostly seemed to happen when I was reading or working on the computer. The thought popped into my head that maybe I needed glasses. After all it had been so long since I had gotten my eyes checked and my Mom's vision is pretty poor. One of the main reasons I hadn't gone was because I thought it would be such a pain to find a doctor and it would take some time to get in for an appointment. Thankfully that wasn't the case.
Pearle Vision at my local mall (Sherwood Park Mall) was an easy, quick and a thorough visit.


I booked my appointment online, which let's be honest as a Mom it's a lot easier to make an appointment online then on the phone with a toddler screaming in the background. I booked my appointment two days beforehand which was great.

Cute reading glasses

Cute reading glasses

My first impression when I walked into the location was that everyone was super friendly. That is always a good sign to me. The receptionist was super helpful and made filling out all the paperwork a breeze. Pearle Vision also does direct billing to your insurance company which is awesome, it's one less thing I have to worry about.
The physician's assistant took me in for a few preliminary tests before seeing the doctor. Maybe I'm a total geek but she took an Optomap of my retinas, which I thought was kinda cool. It's basically a close up photo of your retina which can help detect early signs of diabetes, macular degeneration, glaucoma and more. This photo is sent to the doctor to have a closer look at and see if anything is wrong.

Cute glasses for reading

After these preliminary tests, I met with the doctor for some further tests. Dr. Jones was super friendly right off the bat. She asked me lots of questions, got to know me, my eyes and my lifestyle better. I let her know about the headaches I had been experiencing. She did a series of different tests to get a better understanding of my eyes and eyesight. Dr. Jones performed an eye cover test, a visual acuity test (reading letters on an eye chart, this helps to test how sharp your eyes are), and she also used an opthalmascope. The opthalmascope is another great way to have a look at the overall health of your eyes. It can detect things such as cataracts or hypertension. Thankfully my eye health is great! After Dr. Jones finished all the tests, she went over the results with me. Basically, I still have pretty good vision and didn't really need to get glasses. We talked a bit more about my headaches and she thought that reading glasses might help, especially since I spend a lot of my day reading and on the computer. She showed me what my vision looked like with and without the reading glasses. Even though the prescription was small, I could still tell the difference between the two.

Working from home


Working from home

Details below: Pura Botanicals Perfume, YSL Gloss Volupte & Rouge Volupte Shine Lipstick, Old Kate Spade NY wallet, Versace Sunglasses c/o Pearle Vision, Berg+Betts watch, Anthropologie Notebook, Poppin pen

Whats in my purse flat lay

Now came the fun part, picking out glasses. The ladies in the store who were part of Pearle Vision were so friendly and super knowledgeable, which was great, since when it comes to glasses I am totally clueless. There were lots of options, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that they carry lots of fashionable brands including Michael Kors, Dolce & Gabbana, Tory Burch, Versace and more.


I just went with my gut instinct and picked out a pair of fun Michael Kors tortoise shell frames. When I use to think of reading glasses, cute was not a word that came to mind.  I am glad to have learned that cute reading glasses do exist. Of course I got super distracted by all the beautiful sunglasses they have as well. Turns out they were having a buy 1 pair of glasses, get the 2nd pair free. Which included prescription sunglasses! I picked out a pair of very cool Versace sunnies. Luckily for you they are still running this promotion, it's honestly such a good deal!
So there you have it folks, my experience at Pearle Vision Sherwood Park Mall was informative, dare I say fun and I got to pick up some new stylish accessories. I also learned that my next eye test should be in the next 1-2 years, not 10+, haha.



Alright confession time, when was the last time you got your eyes tested? Let me know below for your chance to win a $100 gift card!

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This giveaway is open to residents of Canada (other than Quebec) who are eighteen (18) years of age or older and located in Canada (other than Quebec). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from BlogHer via the sweeps@blogher email address. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
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This sweepstakes runs from 3/21/2016 - 4/17/2016

<3 Kastles



Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Spring to Life

White lace for spring

Spring style

Half Moon Manicure

Brunette Ombre Lob

How to style jeans for spring

Half Moon Manicure


White lace for spring

Spring denim

Pastel accessories for spring

White lace

When last summer was over I was so sad to pack away this beloved lace tank top from Anthropologie. Okay truth be told, this tank has been sitting under a heap of clothes on top of my dresser with the good intentions of packing it away till spring. Oops! It turned out to be a happy mistake when I saw it sitting there last weekend. With a light little cardigan, it was ready to come to life again. I love that with a few light layers, some of my favourite summer pieces can be worn in early spring. Is there anything in your closet you can't wait to wear again? 

<3 Kastles

p.s- I'm pretty sure I feel like the coolest girl with my new manicure via Nail It Spa in Edmonton, go check them out! They are amazing!

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Anthropologie White Lace Tank (old, similar)





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