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Maha Matar

    LIFESTYLE

    5 TOP REASONS WHY I’M HAPPY !

     

    I was tagged on Instagram to write down the 5 top reasons why I’m happy in my life. I chuckled at first because I thought ” only 5?”I have a few hundred reasons to be happy but if I can only list 5 then it would be these:



    Family


    I am happy because I have a very large and loving family. Being Lebanese you have no choice but to come from a big family and to have a big family of your own! I am happy to have my nurturing mother, caring father, 4 siblings that I can’t live without, my loving husband, 3 incredible children that I love more than life itself, 11 beautiful nieces, 1 handsome nephew, 3 amazing brother and sister in laws, and a caring mother and father in law. I can’t imagine my life without any of these people in it. Our dinners are noisy with screaming kids, our table full of delicious food and everyone is smiling. We are blessed.


    Faith


    I’m happy because I practise a faith that loves me for all my imperfections. I practise a faith that forbids the harming of a human life. A faith so pure that no matter the sin you commit, ask for sincere forgiveness and it is granted upon you. I’m happiest when I am reciting my prayers and devoting my time to thank Allah for all the blessings in my life.


    Friends


    I am happy when I’m surrounded by friends. My friends are few but great! I feel at peace with them. I can say anything and they understand why I said it without having to explain myself. My true friends support me in my countless endeavours in life and love me in return. We support each other as women, mothers, wives ands sisters. I am so very thankful for their commitment, love and support.


    Fortune


    “for·tune (fôr′chən) The chance happening of fortunate or adverse events; luck”.


    I am happy that so far in my life I’ve been really lucky. I’ve never won the lottery or a dream home, but at the same time I’ve never been diagnosed with a disease and my house has never burned down. I guess I owe it to luck!


    Future


    I am happy that my future is so bright that I need sunglasses to shield me from the glare. I am happy that all the hard work I’ve devoted to my family and career will be one hell of a success story. I am happy that my business, even though so small, is steadily growing. I am happy that I took a leap of faith and ventured into a new career that I’m so passionate about. I am at my happiest knowing I still have so much to learn and feeling excited to do so.


    I tag Seema from http://www.glimpse3sixty.com  and Rania from http://the-wardrobe-stylist.com to participate in this tag! This is an easy one ladies 🙂


    Leave me a comment below and tell me why you’re happy in your life?





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    BEAUTY

    ESSENTIAL DAY+ NIGHT LIP CARE

    (Source Google Image)

    We have a hair care routine, feet care routine, and skin care routine (day+night) but how many of us have a lip care routine? In the Winter months your lips will take a lot of abuse because they lack natural protection. Your lips don’t have any oils for sweat glands needed for protection from the cold and wind.They can become chapped, blistered, and sometimes even bleed from wind burn, Ouch! Let’s show our lips some TLC this winter by following this routine. 

    Start off by exfoliating your lips to get rid of all the dry skin that builds up over time. As you know I’m a DIY beauty concoction enthusiast( does that even make sense?) so of course I have a basic but effective lip scrub recipe to share with you:

    LIP EXFOLIATING SCRUB

    2 TBS Brown or White Sugar
    1 TBS Organic Coconut or Almond Oil (I prefer Coconut)
    1 TBS Organic Honey or Maple Syrup

    Mix the sugar and coconut oil in a small bowl. Ensure they are mixed well as this will become the base of the scrub.Combine the honey or maple syrup to the bowl and mix well. Transfer the scrub into a small jar( a baby food jar will do). The lip scrub can be used 2-3 times a week and should be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

    After all the dead skin cells have been scrubbed off, you need to add some hydration back to your lips as they may feel a bit “parched”. In the daytime you should use a lip balm that has at least SPF 20. I recently started to use Jack Black intense therapy lip balm with SPF 25 and I really like it. Maybelline Baby lips SPF 20 is also a really good product to use. 

    In the night time I HIGHLY recommend using a product that will help your lips heal from the day’s stress. I just started to incorporate a lip balm into my night time routine (by now my night time routine ends as the sun is rising…beauty is work!). On a recommendation from a dermatologist I started using Sally Hansen overnight lip recovery balm. The company states that ” this product will revitalise and repair your lips as you sleep”. It helps combat night time water loss so your lips stay super hydrated and plumped in the morning. I have to say I’m really happy with the Sally Hansen lip balm. It has surpassed my expectations as my lips in the morning not only feel super hydrated and smooth, but I noticed my lips are a brighter pink than usual. This may be because they are really hydrated. I love it and I’ll definitely continue to add this balm into my routine.

    If you wear lipstick during the day, you can still ensure your lips stay hydrated and smooth by using a moisturizing lipstick. A drugstore brand I really like is Rimmel London Moisture renew  is Estèe Lauder long lasting lipstick.

    I hope you take my advice and add a day+night lip care routine, your lips will thank you in the morning 🙂

    Maha 
    xoxo




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    BEAUTY, LIFESTYLE

    GLAM NYE LOOK

     

    I can’t believe 2015 is coming to an end! For all of you that live in Ottawa,don’t you love all the snow that finally landed on our beautiful city! I know you won’t let a little snow distract you from your New Years Eve plans. To ring in the NY I collaborated with Rania Abdullah from The Wardrobe Stylist, HairByNadine and our model Simar from Mini Me City to put together Makeup + Hair + Styling tutorial on how to pull off an easy but GLAM NYE look!
     
    Trust me when I say this is easy to do. 
     
    It was our first go at it and I have to say we really enjoyed ourselves(a bit too much) and I believe we truly accomplished some work worth sharing. 

     

    MAKEUP LOOK

     

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     


     
     
     
     
     
    The key to a great cut crease is patience, and a bit of practise!
    1. Apply eye primer such as MAC PRO LONGWEAR PAINTPOT in soft ochre to the entire lid.
    2. Apply a highlight like Gesso on the inner corner of the eye and brow bone.
    3. Along the crease area, draw a line from the outer corner of the eye to the inner corner with a kohl pencil or eyeliner.
    4. Use an eye shader brush like the Eco tools brush to blend the eyeliner out. Use small windshield wiper movements to blend the kohl or eyeliner.
    5. Apply any eye shadow colour you like over the line ( I used Naked from the UD NAKED palette). You can go a bit above the line as well. Ensure you are blending the colour toward the inner corner of your eye.                                                                                             
    6.  TIP: I wanted a dramatic cut crease so for the step above I thickened the eye shadow line with the NAKED shadow.
    7. Apply shadow all over the lid to add colour to the look. I used Half Baked from the UD NAKED palette.
    8. Create a winged look with any liquid/gel liner you have on hand. I used Revlon ColorStay Liquid Liner in Black.
    9. For a more dramatic look add glitter on top of the Half Baked Shadow. I used Annabelle Glitterama in Solar Flare. 
    10. For added drama, apply Naked from the UD NAKED Palette to the lower lashline and go over it with a bit of Darkhorse, also from the NAKED palette.
    11. Line your inner lashline with kohl black pencil.
    12. Finish the look off with falsies and a good coat of mascara. I used Maybelline Volume Express Colossal 
    STYLING
     
    To achieve an ultra GLAM look Rania, from The Wardrobe Stylist, suggests adding these accessories to your outfit of the night.
     
    1. Aqua stone ring (this one has a silver frame though)
    2. Cuff bracelet
    3. Hair chains
    4. Ankle bracelet
    5. Kaftan paired with pants and ultra comfortable tank
    6. Bangles
    7. Slave bracelets
    8. Cuffs
    9. Arm band
    10.Oversized rings in natural stones
    11.Simpler rings such as the criss cross x ring
    12.Head chains (These can be found on Etsy at great prices)
    14.Ankle bracelet or ankle slave bracelets
     
    You can read more about the Styling for this specific look over on The Wardrobe Stylist
    HAIR
    1. Blow out the hair before styling
    2. Section by section curl hair with the curling iron or wand
    3. Once all the hair is curled, loosely pin up each curl with a bobby pin
    4. Let the hair set for 15-20 minutes
    5. Take the pins out and brush each curl out seperatetly to create a wave look
    6. Spray with light hold hairspray if desired
    7. Clip the hair chains underneath the hair strands close to the ears to hide the attaching clips
    8. Add the top head chain and align with the hair partition. 
     
     
    Voila! You’re all Glammed up for NYE!!!
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    BEAUTY, LIFESTYLE

    LUXE GIFT LIST

    Christmas is almost upon us and YOU still don’t have a clue what to buy your beauty obsessed friend, sister, wife, mother, daughter-in-law…YIKES!  Well don’t worry,  I’ve listed some luxurious beauty products to give you a hand. When I say luxurious, trust me, they really are. No one will be disappointed with any of these products. No need to thank me. It’s what I do 🙂

     

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    BEAUTY

    ULTIMATE GUIDE : BEST DRUGSTORE SKINCARE PRODUCTS

     

    This creamy cleanser is fragrance free, lightweight and does not foam when you add water to it. I find the cleansers that foam to be a bit drying on my skin, but that’s just me. I’ve used this cleanser for years, not only because it’s super affordable but it really is the only drugstore cleanser that does not dry out my skin. I’ve tried Kiehls and Clarins cleansers and both products are good products, but were drying my skin out quickly. I would love if Neutrogena made a bigger bottle, as this one is only a 354 ml and I tend to use it up fairly quickly. Also this specific formula(creamy) is not sold in Canada! I know…why rave about it if you can’t buy it here? Because, it’s that good! When I travel to good OL’ Ogdensburgh, NY I stop off at the Walmart and I STOCK UP! In Canada Neutrogena does sell the Ultra Gentle Cleanser Foaming Formula. It’s similar to the creamy formula but foams when you add water to it. Another equally impressive cleanser is this one. It’s for Normal to Dry skin and non-foaming. If you do find the creamy formula sold in Canada, please let me know!
    This is an outstanding moisturizer for the eyes. This formula is loaded with anti-ageing ingredients such as niacinamide, ceramides, and hyaluronic acid. I mostly use this product in the winter months when my face and eye area are extremely dry and need a bit more love! I find this formula to be very moisturizing but not greasy and I’ve never experienced any irritations with it. I’ve tried very expensive high end eye creams and by far this product is my favorite eye cream!
     
     
     
    If you love healthy, hydrated glowing skin then you’ll love facial oils. I started experimenting with facial oils years back. I would mix virgin olive oil (voo) and vanilla essential oil and apply it to my face before bed. I had great results the next morning. I had a natural glow and any blemishes I had seemed to diminish slightly. There are numerous benefits to applying voo on your skin; however  the oil is just too thick to wear underneath makeup or even alone as you’ll look greasy. It did work in keeping my skin hydrated and plump but it wasn’t a practical solution. Fast forward a couple years and voila…Facial Oils are being sold everywhere now! Facial oils have natural antioxidants and protect your skin from harsh external factors (pollution, cold weather, over cleansing). They instantly absorb into your skin to give you a nice glow. In the colder months I absolutely do not leave my house without applying facial oil. If I go without it, within minutes my face will feel tight and it’ll bother me the whole day. Before I found Acure Marula Oil, I had tested out about 3 o r 4 facial oils and none of them felt great on my skin. Acure Marula Oil is paraben and pesticides free (also Vegan). The oil is harvested in South Africa by local women as part of the Marula Project that economically empowers all women of South Africa. Many people compare the Marula oil to Argan oil and both are amazing naturally derived oils; however my results with Marula oil outweigh the results I achieved with Argan oil. As with Argan, Marula oil can be applied to the tips of your hair, your cuticles and any other dry areas you may have. This product can be found at Target or online here.
    Beauty Tip: If you have oily skin YES you can use facial oils! To be on the safe side, apply one drop at first and work up to about 2-3 drops with each application.
     
     I was deliberating whether or not to include this mask in my drugstore post. I wasn’t sure if it would be considered a drugstore product for 2 reasons: it’s sold at select few drugstores (mostly health food stores like Kardish and Rainbow Foods) and because it’s pricier that most drugstore items I’ve previously mentioned. But in all honesty, I really like this mask and I haven’t been able to find  a drugstore product that gives me the same results! It leaves your skin plumped, soft and radiant. I leave this mask on overnight once a week, but in the colder months I definitely use it twice a week for extra hydration. There are a lot of great ingredients in this product that will nourish your skin but the star ingredient is Hyaluronic Acid. This ingredient “can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water” which basically translates too MAJOR HYDRATION for your skin. The company claims that this mask will treat wrinkles. I don’t know how true this claim is but it definitely works to hydrate my skin and get rid of any blackheads and redness I may have. I wanted to also mention that this is also a vegan and sulphate free product.
     
     
    If you haven’t noticed already by reading any blog post of mine, I’m a huge fan of glowing skin and I’m not talking about that Instagram glow you achieve from a kick ass highlighter! That’s great as well, but I want the natural glow that my body can achieve with the help of a good product. That’s why I use products like Derma e. I’ve tried many toners from drugstore brands, department store to the absurdly expensive (Hello CHANEL LOTION DOUCER!)and this toner simply trumps them all. This product is alcohol and fragrance free. It contains niamicide and cell repairing ingredients. It’s helps with uneven skin tone and it really aids your skin in absorbing any other product you apply after.
     
    This is a great moisturizer for someone who has normal to combination skin. This is a lightweight moisturizer and works well when used under makeup. I don’t recommend this product for dry skin but definitely worth looking into if you like lightweight products. I found that it does have a slight fragrance to it but nothing overwhelming, however if you are sensitive to fragrance then this may not be a good option for you. As you know sunscreen is really important, so the added benefit of using this moisturizer is the protection from the sun’s rays. IMO this is another great product from Aveeno.

     

    This is a drugstore moisturizing lotion that can be used on the face and body. It’s fragrance free , lightweight and IMO great for wear underneath makeup. It has loads of ceramids that help restore and maintain the skins natural barriers. I love this moisturizer because I do feel it helps my combination skin (dryer in the winter months) stay plump and hydrated all day. The only drawback is that it does not contain SPF so I mix a bit of this sunblock with the moisturizer and I’m protected from the sun! I have to say that switch back and forth between Cerave lotion and Paula’s Choice Resist Cellular Defense Daily Moisturizer with SPF 25. Both are great products but Cerave can be bought at your local drugstore.

     

    For years I wasn’t able to find a makeup remover that didn’t irritate my eyes. All the products either contained oils or alcohol and my eyes, being so sensitive, would swell up for hours after just one use. I received a sample of Simple Kind to Eyes makeup remover on a trip to the drugstore and the sales associated reassured me that this product would not irritate my eyes and it definitely would not leave me with a greasy residue. I was apprehensive at first but she was 100% right! That night as I applied the product I braced myself for the initial “burn” I was accustomed to when using eye makeup remover but the “burn” never happened. I was pleasantly surprised. It removed all of my eye makeup without any swelling or irritation. Simple also produce makeup remover wipes but I still prefer their liquid over the wipes.
    I need to mention that I do use use this product to remove the rest of my face makeup. Even though it’s at the top end of my budget for a makeup remover it has lasted me awhile (over a year) as a little goes a long way. It’s a very well formulated product and similar to the Simple brand makeup remover, this is also an award winner. 
     
    If you haven’t heard of this facial cloth then you most likely have been living under a rock. I read somewhere that these are the most purchased facial cloths in all of Europe and America. One side of the cloth is smooth for cleansing and the other side is slightly textured for exfoliating. I really like them because of the convenience they offer. At the end of the night you’re tired and can’t be bothered with your regular bedtime beauty ritual, grab one of these wipes and you’re good to go! According to Olay these cloths can be used as your cleanser, toner, mask and scrub. I can definitely agree that they do a good job as a cleanser and I have used the textured side for exfoliating but I won’t be replacing my toner, exfoliator and mask for these. They are just for convenience on days where I need to clean my face quickly. Don’t get me wrong, these cloths do a superb quick job at cleaning my face, but in order to maintain youthful healthy skin you need skin care products that are formulated to target specific skin concerns.
     

    I love this product! It feels so luxurious on the hands and it smells so good! If you don’t like the smell of coconut then stay away 🙂 This cream will restore cracked and chapped hands without leaving a greasy residue. Its formulated with virgin coconut oil, vitamin A, C , E and Shea butter! I keep this product on my bathroom counter to remind me to apply the hand and cuticle cream before bed! It’s a nightly ritual for me. 
    I fell in love with Aveeno products when my daughter was born. To treat her extremely dry skin my doctor recommended I bathe her with Aveeno Baby Cleansing Therapy Wash. I instantly noticed a difference in her skin and since then I’ve only used Aveeno products on my kids. Soon after having her, I noticed I also developed very dry skin, so of course I did what the doctor recommended and starting using Aveeno hydrating body wash. It’s an award winning product for good reason. The natural fig and Shea butter in this product help soothe and hydrate dry skin for hours after you’ve rinsed this product off. It never leaves a residue on your skin or around your shower, it smells divine and for the low price tag definitely worth trying it out. I think I’m on my 12th bottle already!
    I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my post!
    XO
    MAHA
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
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    BEAUTY

    Black Friday Beauty + Fashion Roundup!


    Who doesn’t love a good sale!

    Black Friday is upon us once again so you know I will NOT be at the mall. I’ll be doing some makeup + fashion shopping from the comfort of my home 🙂 I’ve added links( click on the headings) to a few beauty + fashion deals that I’m excited about so why not share them with you all!

    Happy Shopping!


    ALDO

    50% OFF Shoes, Boots, Booties, Satchels + Handbags.

    Aritzia

    30-50% OFF select fall/winter styles.

    AVON

    Up to 60%. Ends 12/2.

    ASOS

    20% OFF Everything!!

    Bath and Body Works

    B3G3FREE on EVERYTHING. Stock Up!

    Banana Republic

    Half OFF Sweaters + 40% OFF rest of purchase. USE CODE BRFRIDAY.

    Becca Cosmetics

    20% off sitewide on orders $50+ with code FAMILY15. Ends 11/30.

    BH Cosmetics

    75% off selected items. BH Cosmetics Liquid Lipsticks $6 !!!

    Coastal Scents

    UPTO 55% OFF Storewide! ENDS 11/30.

    DANIER

    40% OFF Down Coats, Wallets and Handbags. 

    Express

    50% OFF Everything excluding Gift Cards!

    Forever21

    Free Shipping over $30, Deals starting at $6.Boots + Booties 30% OFF.

    Garage Clothing

    40% OFF ONLINE ONLY, UPTO 50% OFF IN STORE and ONLINE select sale items.


    GAP

    50% OFF Everything!

    H&M

    Deals from $5.

    Huda Beauty

    $98 Value for $25 !!

    Julep

    For $$ OFF use code  GIFTING + With every $25 purchase you receive a free Julep Mirror Compact free.

    Kiehls

    15% OFF any Purchase. +$50 Free Shipping USE Code Friday

    Laura Mercier

    25% OFF  Plus Free Ground Shipping and Returns + 2 Deluxe Samples with every $50 purchase.
    This is the best time to buy the famouse Laura Mercier Translucent Powder!

    MELT Cosmetics

    30% OFF Everything

    NORDSTROM

    25% OFF select M.A.C gift Sets , Many Brands include Gift with Purchase. EXTRA 25% OFF Selected sale items. 


    OLD NAVY

    50% OFF ONLINE and IN STORE.END 11/27.

    Paula’s Choice

    15% off Everything!!

    Saleha Beauty

    25% OFF USE CODE blackfriday. Ends 27/11. Hollywood Gold highlighter is on my list to buy!

    SIGMA

    FREE WorldWide Shipping

    Town Shoes

    20% OFF, some exclusions apply

    The Body Shop

    Mix & Match 3 For $33 Sitewide. $5 Shower Gels

    The Bay

    25% Off select M.A.C beauty sets + 50% off ILLMASQUA . ILLMASQUA Lipsticks for $12!!

    Victoria’s Secret

    Free Shipping on +$50 + 10% OFF $100

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