Elizabeth and James

Blogmas Day 14: The Luxe Gift Guide


Everyone wants a little bit of luxury in their life, but very few people are willing to go out and get it for themselves. That’s why gifting holidays are the best ways to give and get the luxe goods. So for the second day of my week long gifting guides I’m giving you the Luxury Gift Guide; gorgeous palettes and scents that may be a higher price point, but that I’d be ecstatic to give and receive for Christmas!

To start we have the ever-gifted and fan favourite of the Urban Decay Naked Palette. Whether it’s Naked, Naked 2, Naked 3, or the new Naked Smokey, (or all of them in the new Naked Vault II) this palette is fabulous and comes with endless eyeshadow possibilities. I consider this on the luxury side due to it’s $50+ price point, coming in at $64.

Next is the Tarte Showstopper Clay Palette, a long-lasting eye and cheek palette. Coming in at $48 the price point isn’t exactly in the ‘luxurious’ category, but the packaging alone sends it there for me. This round, snake-skin-esque leather topped palette is absolutely gorgeous and I just can’t stop opening and staring at it. It’s got 6 eyeshadows, 1 bronzer, 1 highlight, and 1 blush. I’m a lover of all Tarte products and I feel that they’ve really been hitting home runs recently. So this is a great gift for those who haven’t tried any Tarte products before. It’s all here!

Contour palettes have really been the ‘in’ thing for 2015. Well, the beginning of the year at least before the world was hit with Becca x Jaclyn Hill’s Champagne Pop and the art of strobbing (another luxe gift idea!). But for the contour palettes you have lots of gifting options! My favourite, coming in at $52, is the Smashbox Step-by-Step Contour Kit. This is another great luxe gift for newbie’s to the makeup or contour world since it’s simple and step-by-step. The easiest contour out there! And the glossy sleek packaging and red handled contour brush are divine.

And the last of the palettes is definitely my most luxurious of them all. It’s the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit, coming in at $95. This is reaaaally not great value for the price, but is the most gorgeous palette I have ever seen in my life and I just couldn’t help myself. Plus the products are amazing. It includes three Ambient Lighting Powders, two Ambient Lighting Blushes and one Ambient Lighting Bronzer. All of these are available individually with the exception of the middle powder, Iridescent Light, which is a limited powder only available in this palette. If you’ve ever tried any Hourglass Ambient Light Powders then you’ll know the amazing quality of these! Get ready for the compliments.

Then come the scents. I’m really not one to splurge and buy scents for myself, but I love getting them as gifts. I love both the Elizabeth and James White Nirvana coming in at $75, and the Jo Malone Earl Grey and Cucumber coming in at $125. Jo Malone – the true gift of luxury!

What are your favourite luxe palettes and purchases? Any luxe gifting ideas of your own?


My 24th Birthday


Twenty Four years have crept up on me; they’ve come and gone whether welcomed or not. I’m beginning to experience that stage in life where birthdays are dreaded rather than anticipated, yet each and every year I question that judgement since my birthday is always one of the most wonderful days of the year. To start, my birthday falls around Thanksgiving weekend every year. A time when the weather is changing, the leaves are coloured, and the hot coffee is ever-flowing. But the most important part is my wonderful family and friends who make me feel so special.

My weekend consisted of lots of family visits, lots of hugs, and lots of food – everything I could have asked for. I received some wonderful gifts and even managed to squeeze in a little shopping for myself! Nothing better, eh? I stopped off at Sephora and picked up just a few things, including the Sephora 2015 Birthday Gift from NARS, the Mini Velvet Lip Pencil in Cruella and the Mini Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien. I then grabbed the ever-coveted, often lusted after, Elizabeth and James White Nirvana eau de perfume, as it’s something I’ve wanted for so long and finally decided to treat myself with. And finally, the Tarte Coloured Clay CC Undereye Corrector in the shade LightI, which can hopefully deal with these dark circles under these 24 year old eyes.

As gifts come, this year was great! My family spoils me. I got the cutest Cath Kidston Button Spot Mini Satchel bag and a gorgeous Cath Kidston British Birds Patterned Wool Scarf, both adorable pieces picked up across the pond on one of my mom’s recent trips. My sister got me the cutest earrings and birth stone bracelet from Freedom at TopShopAnd last but not least, Corey hit a home run with a new Nikon remote for my D40 along with an Aperture Amaran Halo Light that I can’t wait to play with! And to round it off, an adorable set of pencil crayons with the Enchanted Forest colouring book


And, just for fun, instead of heavy drinking and dancing, my friends and I decided to have a low-key fun night at a Toronto escape room. We went to Trapped Canada in Markham and it was so fun. We failed…..but they did mention to us that only 4.8% of groups have been able to complete that room. It was impossible. Can’t wait to try it again!

So cheers to that start of my 25th year. Can’t wait to see what it brings!


Wishlist #8

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Another edition of a written rant and rave with a deep underlying desire for things I really don’t need. Like I’m serious here – I’ve spent more money than I care to think about over the past few months. But with no more events, and no more weekend getaways on the near horizons (I lie, I’m planning a shopping weekend…) it’s time to hunker down and save. I may say this about once a month, but I really have nothing at all that I need. So besides the necessaries, and maybe a dinner or two out on date nights, I’ll be as frugal as I can be! But here is what I’m drooling over.

I’ve been a big fan of Matt and Nat leather bags for a long time. One of my first ‘Big Girl’ purchases (probably when I was 12) was a purple zippered Matt and Nat wallet and I absolutely loved it! Even today, although I dont use that wallet anymore, I still love the quality and the leather. It had been quite awhile since I’d purchased one, although I drooled over my friends collection, but after purchasing the Mitsuko Tote I’m hooked again. I’ve been loving the Brave Backpack in Black and think it looks absolutely amazing every time I see it on the streets. I love Matt and Nat, I see my next bag purchase coming from them for sure.

Other than pricey leather purchases I’ve, of course, been lusting over a few beauty products of course. These for sure are not necessary purchases and are more on the lines of products I’d love to try in the future. The first is the Ole Henriksen On the Go Cleanser which is supposed to be a supper aromatic cleanser jam packed with lots of vitamin C for a great pick-me-up. My skin could use it. I’ve been loving more orange-y eyeshadow tones recently so I’d love the Becca Ombre Rouge Eye Palette for the fall. Of course, on every shopping list and wish list I’ve created recently is the Elizabeth and James Nirvana White eau de parfum. I’m so in love with this scent but have so many others and never think to buy myself a perfume.

It’s only a few things, but of course the prices add up. Now there are millions of others that I’d love to add to the list, but c’mon, I’ll always want more!

What things have you been lusting over lately?