December 2013 Favourites!

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My favourites this month sort of fall into two categories: things to look sparkly and pretty for holiday parties and things to cuddle up with or protect against the winter cold.

1. Soap & Glory Glow Lotion – This is a really nice shimmery lotion to get your winter skin looking lovely for parties or date night and it smells awesome. I wore it a lot when I was around 18/19 so it’s very nostalgic for me.

2. Maybelline Color Elixir in Mauve Mystique – I’m in love with purple lip colours because they tend to look nice with my pale, cool skin tone, and this one is great. It’s somewhat sheer, but there is still a good colour payoff and I think it looks best after it’s been on for about half an hour.

3. Essie luxeffects topcoat in Set in Stones – I’ve basically worn this for two months straight and written about it here and here. Because if you can’t wear sparkly silver nail polish around Christmas, when can you?

4. Got2B Smooth Satin Drops – This is a really nice smoothing hair serum that makes your hair look incredibly shiny and healthy and I’ve been using it this month whenever my hair looks dull or just not sleek enough. I like to braid my hair at night and then wear it wavy the next day and this is great for making the waves look shiny and defined rather than a bit fluffy. I concentrate most of it on the bottom half of my hair and use anything left over to smooth flyaways on top of my head.

5. C.O. Bigalow Rose Salve – Rose salve is a life saver for the dry lips that come with cold whether and central heating. I put this on my lips every night, but before I bought the Crabtree and Evelyn cuticle oil, I used this on my cuticles every night too. When I got a bad head cold earlier this month I also used this to soothe the chapped skin around my nose.

6. Crabtree & Evelyn Cuticle Oil Pen- My cuticles have been really bad this month, but this oil has helped a lot. I put it on before bed. It has a nice brush tip aplicator and the oil is fairly dry, so it won’t get all over everything and it sinks in nicely. It also has a really pleasant fresh smell.

7. The Southern Vampire Mysteries Series by Charlaine Harris – This is the book series that the show True Blood is based on, and they are fantastic for a quick, light, entertaining read. Sookie, the main character is very likeable, her love interests are sexy as hell and the plots are interesting enough and well paced. Perfect for holiday reading.

8. Beige plaid scarf – I love this scarf! I got it at Old Navy in November and I have been wearing it non-stop. It goes with just about everything and it’s huge and very soft.

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Another favourite of mine in this picture:

9. SNOW! It snowed before Christmas and I got all excited…

10. Pinterest! I couldn’t get enough of pinning Christmas recipes, cold-weather fashion and festive decor. Check out my pins!

Finally, I leave you with a picture that pretty much sums up my Christmas, and favourite bits of December in general: Sleepy Christmas Cat!

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Lovely scented lotions (Gift Guide)

This is a round-up of some of my favourite scented lotions. There is quite a variety so if you want to give someone a lovely pampering present for Christmas, these would be great. Many of the scents are also available in other forms (body wash, body mist, perfume, etc) so you could give a nice set to someone on your list!

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The Luxurious Spa one: The Fig Leaf & Sage body lotion from Kiehl’s ($30.00) is perfect for someone who likes somewhat unusual scents and who wants their lotion to be serious about moisturizing. To me, this smells exactly like fresh beeswax with an undertone of spicy sage. The scent mellows and fades a bit, but it does last quite a long time. It can smell very much like natural coconut when you first put it on, but it mellows out nicely. It has a thin consistency that sinks into the skin well. This one is the best out of the group at softening skin; it moisturizes extremely well! I would recommend this for someone who likes natural scents and needs (or appreciates) a serious moisturizer. If you still want the skin softening benefits but want a slightly more traditional scent, the Vanilla & Cedarwood is also very nice.

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The Classic One: Japanese Cherry Blossom ($12.50) from Bath & Body Works is a great everyday, feminine lotion. It smells delightfully floral and mellows to a nice, almost baby powder and flowers scent. The scent lasts very well. It is not too “little girl”, nor would I say that it is something only an older woman would wear. I honestly think this could suit anyone who likes quite a feminine scent. The consistency is not liquid-y, and it is not overly thick. It does a good job moisturizing the skin and sinks in well.

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The Fresh One: Sea Island Cotton from Bath & Body Works ($12.50) is a beautiful, uplifting, fresh scent. Perfect for people who adore light, clean scents. The smell is reminiscent of clean cotton and an ocean breeze. This scent will be with you all day. I think this might be better for a younger woman, but not necessarily. While the Bath & Body Works lotions are fairly inexpensive, they don’t smell “cheap” at all.

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The Sophisticated One: Summer Hill from Crabtree & Evelyn (~$28.00) is utterly sophisticated and utterly feminine. This is a sweet, grown-up floral scent. Light and flirty, I think this would be great for a wide variety of ages, as long as they love girly, upscale scents. And the scent lasts and lasts. I appreciate that this comes with a pump and the design is minimalist. This lotion does an excellent job of moisturizing and the texture is silky and relatively thin in consistency.

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The Holiday One: The Ginger Sparkle Body Butter from The Body Shop ($20.00) is a scrumptious, Christmassy scent for anyone who loves ginger. The packaging, while cute, is a bit misleading. This does NOT smell like gingerbread, but instead like beautiful, fresh, sweet, spicy ginger. I could smell this all day, it is so lovely. Who doesn’t want to smell like warm, spicy ginger for the holidays? The consistency is thick, but not waxy or hard and it does tend to leave a bit of a protective layer on the skin (i.e. it doesn’t sink in 100%, but it also doesn’t feel like a residue or anything sticky). The scent fades to just a hint of warm spiciness fairly quickly – within a few hours. I adore this body butter! If you like the smell of ginger, you will LOVE this lotion.

What are your favourite scented lotions? Will you be getting anyone on your Christmas list a scented body lotion or body care set?