If you were following my blog last year, you know that winter fashion street style inspiration currently on Instagram or Pinterest is not a true depiction of practical winter attire. With this in mind, I wanted to style something that was both exciting and warm, fun and functional!
I got together with Ottawa Photographer Kamara Morozuk, who doesn’t necessarily do street style photography (although she nailed it!) but has found her true passion in live concert photography. Her work is amazing! I love her spunky energy and her shooting style so much, that I want to keep her all to myself! So don’t visit her Instagram, ok?
What I am wearing
Although it’s been around for many years, the leopard fun fur coat is in full force this season! I bought mine at AMH Style, my favourite consignment shop in Ottawa. The one I am wearing is from Joe Fresh, but there are loads of great coats on sale at Le Chateau and Amazon Canada right now. My rose gold sunglasses were gifted to me from the new Bonlook eyewear store in CR Rideau Centre (it’s a Montreal brand by the way)! My black block heel ankle booties are “New Symphony” from Geox. My bell sleeve sweater is from H&M and my cropped jeans are from Gap.
Get The Look
I styled this outfit from my wardrobe, but I was able to find similar items, if you want to copy-cat the look! Enjoy the photos, I froze my buns off for them!
Thank you to the Canadian Museum of Nature for letting us loiter on your premises to capture these fantastic shots!
Photography provided by Kamara Morozuk. Thank you for freezing your fingers, your camera and for risking your life to get the best shots! XOX C
Makeup remover is a personal thing. Some like it milky, some like it creamy, some like it oily, some don’t clean their makeup off before going to bed…you catch my drift. Disclaimer: I am guilty of the latter from time to time. I know, it’s gross, but I’m lazy.
This beauty review is all about the best makeup removers that are light with a water-like solution. These are my favourite solutions because they are gentle on my skin, very effective, not messy and super easy to use. Bioderma Hydrabio H20, Neutrogena Oil Free Eye Make-up Remover and Vichy Purete Thermal cleansing micellar solution are all amazing makeup removers and offer a unique approach to washing your makeup off! I hope this review will help you find one that works for you. And if buying a new makeup remover encourages you to remove your makeup before going to bed, well good on you sista! Look at you knocking down those 2017 New Years resolutions!
PRO TIP- I always, always dampen my cotton wipe with water before adding the makeup remover to it. It makes you use less product and helps to wash the makeup off by wetting it! I also use eye-makeup remover to clean my entire face, not just my eyes.
My mom, my fashion and beauty mentor, gave me this bottle for Christmas in my stocking. She heard through the grapevine that it was ranked one the best makeup removers. It has won lots of awards and is well-known in the beauty world. I have to admit, I am falling for it, quite hard. It’s so gentle, smells light and fresh, and very effective at cleaning off makeup, eye-liner and mascara. The formula is so gentle you could bring it on vacation or camping and get away with not rinsing it off. This micelle solution comes in different formulas, suited for different skin types. The best part, it’s very affordable.
This is my personal go-to. I have been using Neutrogena for over 8 years now. I also buy the face wipes, which I use when I have a full-face of makeup. The solution is gentle, cleanses very well and has a nice light smell. It says oil-free, but it still leaves an oil-like finish. The finish is surprisingly very moisturizing and doesn’t leave your skin dry. If you look closely, you will notice 2 layers in the solution which you have to shake before using. I usually stock up on this when I find it on sale for $7.99!
I received this Vichy Purete Thermal cleansing solution to review, which actually inspired this post. I love that this is a 3-in-1 product which not only removes makeup, but cleanses and tones the skin at the same time. This is great for travel because it minimizes the number of bottles you need to pack in your beauty kit. This solution creates a bit more foam than the other two. For this reason, I do find you need to rinse it off. It has a signature Vichy scent, which I love, but can be strong for those who prefer non-scented solutions.
When it comes to winter, I never sacrifice functionality. My shoes don’t need to keep my feet warm necessarily, but at the very least they need to keep my feet dry! I can easily double up on a pair of wool socks for warmth.
It’s hard to find sleek, warm and weatherproof boots that are still fashion forward. We live in Canada, and you would think that these items would be readily available, but alas they aren’t. I was however pleasantly surprised when I discovered a new brand called Aquatalia, at Nordstrom. Aquatalia is an Italian brand that makes luxury shoes and boots with innovative weatherproof and stain-resistant technology. There’s a huge selection of them on sale right now, so if you are looking to invest in a great pair of waterproof winter boots, have a look at some of my favourites below.
Nordstrom has an awesome return policy. If you are not happy with your purchase, they will take it back, no questions asked! It’s a risk-free purchase if you ask me, that’s why I never hesitate to buy from them.
I want to start by saying; this is a very sensitive topic in the blogosphere, or better yet in life. No one likes to talk about money or ask for it, whether it’s in their professional or personal life. I, however, think it’s a sign of immaturity and business amateurity (if that’s a word). I wasn’t always great at talking about money. But the more work experience I got, the more I grew out of being shy to negotiate things like my hourly wage. I always stated the facts and remained professional at all times. Maybe it was a sign of maturity which helped seal the deal. I use the same approach present day when working with clients: this is my rate; these are the services that I offer in exchange for that rate. If you want to negotiate, I am okay with that too.
But I digress.
The real point of this post is to talk about how bloggers get paid by affiliate links, a.k.a getting paid via referral-based commission, a.k.a sales (ugh, I hate that word!).
News flash, bloggers don’t get a steady paycheque from a blogger association. We are business owners, just like the rest of you. Think of us as a digital magazine, with a human touch, personality and taste that you can relate too! We do get gifted a LOT of free swag, but we all know that swag doesn’t pay for our web hosting or IT support, now does it. But you know what does pay, even if it’s a tiny fraction of the cost? Affiliate links!
Affiliate links are specially coded links that are used to track sales coming from a specific site (they are like ads, but they send you directly to the item rather than the store). Here’s an example of a successful transaction. A reader clicks on an affiliate link on her favourite blog, she buys the product that is being promoted on the blog and the referrer (blogger) gets a small percentage of the sale amount (usually a 2%-10% commission). For example, when you visit my “Shop” page, you will see a whole bunch of products that I have selected and if you buy them, I could get a small kick back, like $2 per item.
There are loads of different sites that offer Affiliate programs for different retailers and brands, in fact, there are so many I can’t keep track of all the ones I have subscribed too. I have to admit, I am not very good at using affiliate links, they can be cumbersome and time-consuming. But when used optimally, they can really pay off. I think I have made a whopping $10 in my lifetime… it’s time to start making the money.
My beef with affiliate links
There are not enough affiliate links for Canadian online businesses or all the stores I shop at
There are too many Affiliate programs out there, it’s hard to keep track
I am lazy- it’s a lot of work for very little return (but in the end, it’s all about volume baby!)
A lot of Canadians are not online shoppers (expensive duties, lack of options) and when your audience is primarily Canadian, the well runs dry my friends!
I have to buy something out of pocket to promote someone’s business, for a chance to make a bit of money
Albeit affiliate links are part advertising, and part sales, I would argue that an affiliate link can be more genuine than a sponsored post. Say for example, I go shopping and buy a whole bunch of clothes that I like and that I actually want to promote. Through affiliate links, I can send you directly to where you can buy the clothes and get a little referral bonus. This to me is more honest than saying “hey, look at this thing I was given for free”. Does that make sense?
In the end, it’s my duty to educate you, my followers, if I expect you to buy from me. It all starts with trust baby. Here are some common misconceptions about affiliate links, that could help you gain clarity:
Readers may not understand what the bloggers’ intentions are, or feel that it’s not a genuine referral
Readers don’t know what they are clicking on
Readers think that their information is being collected by the retailers
Readers don’t feel like they should financially support the filthy rich blogger because she gets everything for free anyways (bitter much! Haha)
If you are a blogger, you know there are loads of other ways bloggers can earn a living and you also know that affiliate links are not the be-all and end-all.
And for all you readers out there, it’s important to remember that affiliate links are meant for bloggers to gain residual income, a.k.a cash on the side. And when you purchase something using a link, you’re affirming to your favourite blogger “Hey girl, thanks for this great advice! Your next coffee is on me.” And lastly, only buy stuff you need, but when you do, think about buying them through my affiliate links, would ya?