Category Archives: My Lists

Foundations… my top 3.

Ladies and gents, something I haven’t done in a while is talk about makeup, simply because I don’t wear much of it anymore. However there are odd days where I feel up to it and may throw on one of my favourite foundations, so I’ve rounded them up for a quick conversation.

In parcticular, there are three that I go between regularly…

< in order of preference >

it Cosmetics / Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream w/ SPF 50+ / $38.00

it Cosmetics Your Skin But Better CC+, Heavenly Skin Perfecting Brush, Bye Bye Pores Finishing Powder

For the longest time I had read and heard great reviews about this well-rounded product but it wasn’t accessible in Canada yet. When I went to New York City in April I obviously dashed for Sephora and stocked up on whatever it Cosmetics I could. The Your Skin But Better CC+ Cream being one of the products.

I generally wear it when I’m headed somewhere fancy that requires bringing my A-Game, and here’s why:

  • Full-coverage, and I mean FULL. You’ve never seen a CC Cream hide your baggage like this bad boy can,
  • Beyond radiant complexion,
  • Full UVA/UVB protection,
  • Skincare benefits from an anti-aging serum featuing Hydrolyzed Collagen.

I will suggest pairing it with the recommended Heavenly Skin Smoothing Complexion Brush for optimal application and wear. I can’t go an application without it.

You’re also going to want to make sure it’s set well and if keeping to the full range of products I’d say go with the Bye Bye Pores Pressed Powder from it Cosmetics, yet another personal favourite.

Seriously though, you can’t go wrong.

Surratt Beauty / Surreal Real Skin Foundation Wand / $65.00

Surratt Beauty Surreal Real Skin Wand

About a year ago I was on the hunt for a new foundation, and again, just so happened to be in New York City as well. At the Sephora on 5th Avenue I came across the line Surratt Beauty, also not available in Canada, and an inclination led me to grab their Surreal Real Skin Foundation Wand.

This unique product has a pump at the bottom and bristled applicator at its top for a one-stop-shop product that has it all concealed into one cylinder. Its a smooth and seamless application that leaves the skin looking fresh and dewy, with every wear. It also last great throughout the day, but do expect a HEAVY glow by the end of the day if you have a slightly oilier skin type.

The only down fall to this great foundation is the possibility of damaging the applicator, leading to the overall waste of the entire product. However it hasn’t happened yet, so I’ll just go ahead and knock on a piece of wood.

I say try it. You won’t regret it. It’s definitely going to remain one of my top picks for quite a while.

The Ordinary / Coverage Foundation / $6.90

The Ordinary Coverage Serum Foundation

When it comes to The Ordinary by Deciem there isn’t much more to be said other than cost effective and results oriented. The Toronto brand popped up just a few years back and has made their mark, fast. Whenever I head into one of their shops the Coverage Foundations are never in stock which make them hard to come by.

So when I went into the Bay & Bloor store last week and saw a full shelf, I 100% matched my shade and snagged a bottle.

For $6.90, I’m not going to complain…

  • It has light wear but great coverage (not nearly as much as the it CC+ Cream though),
  • Sits well over a light moisturizer,
  • Lasts well through contact with light water.

I would certainly not recommend it for an OILY skin type and would highly suggest a slightly mattifying setting powder to finish the application off. The full range of shades also makes it a product for almost any skin colour.

Goodluck getting one. But if you do, enjoy!

Essentially these are the foundations I wouldn’t be able to live without, as of right now.

If you’ve tried any of the above leave us some of your thoughts. If not, happy testing! All the links provided will get you to the right places.

Remember the Foundations,

pG. =D

Rescued on a Sunday / Skincare Routine 

Happy Sunday kiddo’s, it’s an absolutely gorgeous day in Toronto and that deserves a day of pampering as well as some R&R.

Last week was a slightly hectic one, but when is it not, I mean really; however I made it through with my skin still intact. Although, as I got to the end of the week I began seeing some of the impact from the added stress, and I absolutely DESPISE stressed skin, so here’s what we’re going to do to aleviate that issue…

Rescued on a Sunday Routine,                     For Normal/Oily Skin with Textural Issues and Slight Pigmentation

  1. 1 Pump ~ Kiehl’s Facial Fuel Energizing Face Wash to kickstart the skin into its woken state, reduce puffiness and invigorate,
  2. 10 Minutes ~ L’Oréal Pure-Clay Red Algae Mask for a gentle exfoliation, energized radiance and youthful glow,
  3. 5 Minutes ~ Kiehl’s Calendula & Aloe Soothing Hydration Mask to refresh the skin with a burst of hydration and calm any infmaled, red or irritated areas,
  4. Kiehl’s Brightness Activating Toner to restore pH and reduce building of melanin,
  5. Kiehl’s Age Defender Eye Contour Cream to reduce dark circles, puffiness and initial signs of aging,
  6. 3 Drops ~ The Ordinary 2% Hyaluronic Acid + B5 to hydrate the skin and restore its’ texture,
  7. 3 Drops ~ The Ordinary 12% Ascorbyl Glucoside to combat melanogenesis,
  8. 3 Drops ~ Kiehl’s Daily Reviving Concentrate to supply anti-oxidants and a healthy, warm glow,
  9. 1 1/2 Pumps ~ Kiehl’s Skin Rescuer to calm and moisturize stressed skin.

Now, didn’t that feel incredible?

These bad boys are my go-to whenever my skin is feeling weak, malnourished and/or stressed. All together, they’re some of my favourite products.

So if you find you’re skin is ever feeling stressed or beginning to wear-down you might want to consider taking a look at a few of these products. And as always, hit me up with any questions or if you want some added guidance.

Keep your skin calm and it shall carry on,

pG. =D 

My Toronto Eaton Centre Top-5 Shops

Those who have a steady pay and enjoy indulging as I do understand that shopping never ends; specifically when one works in a multi-level mall lined with a combination of deparment stores, luxury boutiques as well as a conglomerate of mass-produced brands that can be spotted in other malls across the globe. People say addiction is a bad thing, and my response to that hot topic is often, “So they say.” I mean we can be an addict but still moderate our addiction, right? Does that get covered by the ‘everything in moderation’ ideal as well? Maybe, but who honestly cares when you work hard, look good and thus feel good. The Cadillac Fairview Toronto Eaton Centre gets this, it is the ‘Home of Toronto Style’ after all. 

Not a day of work goes by that I walk through the mall without peering into my favorite stores with the intention of wanting to spoil myself. I do work hard though so it is only fair to reward myself with tokens of acknowledgement along the way to push for even more success, and I am sure many of you do this as well. Now when I say tokens along the way I literally mean shopping as I walk through the mall from North to South on my way to work, which is deadly by every means. 

Photo by Darren Eagles, @darreneaglescreative

In order, here are the 5 stores that have made me a return-customer at the CF Toronto Eaton Centre:

1. Sephora. The devil’s word. You can not say the word Sephora without instsntly feeling compelled to find a black and white striped entrance that ecnloses Pandora’s Box. I will tell you one thing; I consider myself lucky for not being exposed to the outrageously lavish Sephora that exists on Fifth Avenue in New York City because the bank would break, daily. However I am delighted that we have such a big location on the third floor at the CF Toronto Eaton Centre that hosts such a wide selection of products to chose from , so ours does the job just fine. 

2. UNIQLO. It was the extremeley anticipiated opening of one of Japan’s finest clothiers that had the CF Toronto Eaton Centre packed during a weekend back in September. So much buzz and attention was directed towards this newer Canadian retailer that I had to check it out for myself. After my initial visit I have not been able to get enough of what UNIQLO has to offer especially because of their Heat Tech clothing options that are beyond ideal for the Winters we experience here in Canada.

3. H&M. I would be a total liar if I said I did not shop at H&M. I mean, everyone does at some point. Whether it be to pick-up some odds and ends or to concoct an entire outfit for a special event, you can not go wrong with a visit to the global giant. 

4. Zara. This obsession is more of a controlled one as a visit to Zara is usually a result of needing new work clothing. Since I wear all black and highly enjoy a professional yet polished apprearance I often find that this store will carry my favorite solutions to my clothing needs for a reasonable price. Now that I think about it, it has been while; even talking about this has inspired me to shop. 

Bonlook at the Toronto Eaton Centre

5. Bonlook. This may be the one store on my CF Toronto Eaton Centre Top 5 list that you have yet to become familiar with, and it is a very special one. Bonlook opened at the CF Toronto Eaton Centre on the third floor back in December and is a luxury eyeware boutique that has origins in Montreal but opperates with an online interface similar to the way Clearly Contacts does, but with much more ease and class. I treated myself to a pair just after Christmas and I finally just picked them up yesterday after two weeks of anxiously awaiting thier arrival. The store and its’ selection, the service and the quality of my glasses are enough to have me purchasing a new pair of unqiue, and I stress unique, glasses on a monthly basis. They are that awesome. I will be sure to post my review about my new Woodland Plaid Trailblazer eyeware next week. 

Do we understand my struggle?

Photo by Darren Eagles, @darreneaglescreative

I spend my day uncovering the needs of customers, some enjoyable and some not. So maybe, just maybe… I want someone to uncover and address my needs every once in a while. That once in a while might happen to be every day but hey, what is self-purveyed happiness to a life of misery, loathing and want? 

My motivation can be found the form of an Italian black leather boot, size 9.5/10. 
If we do not take the time to occassionally indulge in ourselves but yet tell others to do so for the benefit of our business, are we not liars? I prefer to walk the talk and it shows when you can stand in front of someone with a tremendous amount of confidence and teach them how to indulge in themselves as well. As a Salesman my job is most certainly to make money where it is needed but also to teach and educate customers like you and I on the importance of pampering ourselves when we can, given the opporunity.

What are your top stores when treating yourself to all that the material world has to offer?

Stay Indulgent,

Peter. =D 

My Top 6 Pre-Photoshoot To-Do’s

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Whether you’re a professionally trained human manequin or someone who finds themselves encountering their own recreational glam-gig on the occassion; there’s always a few things we can do to prepare ourselves for that twilight moment. Take it a step further and pamprer yourself before even getting remotely touched by Stylists, Hairdressers or Make-Up Artists, whom do produce the quality results a Visionist and their audience wants to see.

What comes from this you ask? Self-satisfaction and the ability to ultimately care for yourself, by yourself. While also producing a creature worthy of being photographed.

Recently I experienced my own moment in the spotlight having my hair balayaged, given a fade and a cut by the talented Victoria Hazell (IG:@missvictorious) while then being photographed by her also talented twin-sister Michelle (IG:@ellenaturel). To be honored is an understatement as to what the entire experience made me feel, a fine blend of excitement as well. I won’t lie and tell you my confidence drove me through it without an ounce of nerves to be felt, because there were definitely butterflies that lingered the evening before the big day. This was also a big project for Victoria and Michelle and I didn’t want to let them down; so to set the nerves aside I prepared myself in a few ways the night before, which of course turned into an evening of pampering and self-indulgance at the same time.

1. Prepare the look…

… for either the style of your attire (if you’ve been asked to style yourself) or the facial expressions you want to feature in the photos. As narcissistic as this sounds, get yourself in-front of a mirror and work it like it’s nobody’s business. Trust me on this when I say there is a peace of mind to be associated.

2. The Hydrating Masque…

… is key at helping restore radiance (avoiding dull skin) and texture; smoother and brighter is always better. Find whichever brand works for you, my personal favorites are ones that can be left on overnight. If you are having makeup applied it definitely doesn’t hurt to prepare a fresh and smooth canvas for the artist.

3. Rest is necessary…

… for the ultimate peace of mind. No one appreciates the, “Will I sleep enough?” jitters. A focused and relaxed demeanor will go much further than someone strung and dependant on caffeine for a positive outcome. I suggest the often recommended 6-8 hours.

4. Waking up with Meditation…

… is not only empowering, but can truly center and balance an individual. I personally dedicate 45-minutes to the exercise on a daily basis; however closing your eyes for 15-3o minutes in a calm setting will help build on that ‘I Know Can’ confidence/quality that a model should often have. Finding Homeostasis does not need to come from a trip to the Sensory Deprivation tank.

5. Brighten and Exfoliate…

… on the morning of for a glowing and even smoother complexion. Again, choose a masque/exfoliator that works for you, preferably with something effective like Turmeric; and don’t forget to give your skin the pampering it deserves. You want the camera to love you after all, right?

6. What Skincare routine you use…

… should be focused on obtaining a healthy and dewy glow (not an oil-slick by any means). Personally my preference focuses on products that energeize, hydrate and protect the skin with anti-oxidants. Keep in mind when wearing makeup to minimize the Skincare to four/five products that achieve the glow but layer well together; and don’t forget to use a Toner. Makeup applications are much nicer when ehnanced from the pH balancing effects that a Toner does provide.

Well by the time I had gotten to the location of our photoshoot, The Sound Studio Canada (IG:@thesoundstudiotoronto), I was prepared, comfortable and confident in the results I would produce. Needless to say the outcome of the shoot was unreal and if you want to see some photos, hope on Instagram and over to:

@petergrande

@missvictorious

@ellenaturel

Now that you’re familiar with my favorite things to do before getting in front of a camera, I want to know as well what steps YOU take when preparing yourself for either an event or photoshoot; what nerve-calming routine gives you a confidence boost? Comment below and leave some insight!

Stay Gorgeous,

Peter. Xo.