Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Years Eve Sparkle | Happy New Year!

Happy New Years Eve! New years eve seems like a great time to wear sparkles and glitter, even if you're not going anywhere. Personally, new years eve has always been a day when I stay home all day with my family. We cook all day to prepare a big Japanese feast, and then we watch a Japanese signing show at night. I've never gone to a new years party, but I felt like wearing sparkles this year anyway!

Monday, December 29, 2014

What I found under the Christmas tree 2014

Hello everyone, hope you had an amazing Christmas if you celebrated it! I definitely did, and although I was sick and had to take a three hour nap, I had an awesome time. I kept changing my mind on whether or not I was going to write this post, as I've always seen them to be showing off a little bit. My love for reading them finally took over, and I decided that I'd just write one anyway :) This is going to be a very long post... not necessarily because I got a lot of presents, but because my first gift gave me amazing lighting that made me want to take a lot of artistic shots; this post has about 20 photos!!! (and I also blab on a lot, so that doesn't help either!)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

DIY Sewn Catnip Toys for Kitties

With the holidays keeping people busy with gifts, people often forget that their pets would very much appreciate some presents as well! Even if it's not given on Christmas (they'll love it just as much any other day!), I love making my cats some catnip pillow toys during the holidays. All you need is some fabric, a sewing machine (you could also do it by hand), and some catnip leaves... You can buy these at any pet store. It's really easy, and your kitties are sure to love them!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

3 Personalized Ways to Give Gift Cards

Giving someone a gift card to their favourite store is always a great present, but I usually find that it feels a little unpersonalized if it's just given in a little white envelope. This year, I came up with three quick and easy ways to personalize a gift card for someone you love. You probably already have a lot of the materials at home, so this is a great 10-minute project to do on Christmas eve (last minute).

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

DIY Chocolate Lip Balms | Gift Idea

I love making lip balms because they're so easy and fun to make, but everyone loves them. They also make great gifts for groups of people, because it's easy to mass produce batches of homemade lip balms. This particular recipe only has four ingredients, and none of them are hard to find. I also love that it only takes about 20 minutes to make from start to finish. The lip balm itself smells like chocolate chips, and is really moisturizing on the lips... it actually works well!

I Made Biscotti??

As an early Christmas present, I decided to make some chocolate-hazelnut biscotti for my mom. I had never made biscotti before, so this was a brand new experience for me! All I knew was that my mom likes chocolate, she likes hazelnuts, and she likes biscotti... so I found a recipe that combines all three. Entertaining with Beth's biscotti recipe is simple, easy to follow and creates great results.

Gift Exchange With My Friends

This year for Christmas, my friends and I decided to have a little gift exchange. In preparation, I made and wrapped a DIY bath and body gift set for all three guests as gifts. I also made raspberry macarons using Entertaining with Beth's recipe. I had never made macarons before, but they turned out really well using her recipe :)

Monday, December 22, 2014

DIY Bath and Body Gift Set | Gift idea

As you probably know, I've been making loads of handmade bath and body products to give as gifts this Christmas. I actually made little gift sets with these products, and I thought I'd share how i packaged and wrapped each product, as inspiration for your gift wrapping. (Because lets be honest, we all probably have some gifts that we still need to wrap!)

What's in the set:

DIY Vanilla Cupcake Bath Bombs | Gift Idea

A couple of years ago, I tried to make bath bombs for my mom for Christmas. I used all the right ingredients, and followed a recipe that I found perfectly, but the end result was a bunch of powder that didn't smell too nice, and wouldn't stick together. This year, I tried again using a foolproof recipe that I found on YouTube. I did a quick overview of the recipe itself in this post (I focused more on the presentation), but I would recommend checking out Wendytung's original video here to see a more in-depth recipe.
If you want to learn how to make deliciously scented, adorable bath bombs, then keep on reading!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

The Best of Secret Santa 2014

This year, I did secret Santa in three of my four classes at school. I think that it's a fun way to spread joy during the holiday season. I thought I'd share two of the gifts that I received that I absolutely love.  If my secret santas from this year ever read this post, then thank you to all of you!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

All I want for Christmas is...

I've been seeing more and more Christmas wish lists being posted on my favourite blogs, and I have to admit that they're really interesting and fun to read. I thought that I'd share my own just for the fun of it!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Two Easy DIY Body Lotions | Gift idea

Body lotions are easy to make, and they're very useful in day to day life, especially in the colder, dryer months. I've put together two of my favourite, easy DIY body lotion recipes... one is a simple and standard whipped coconut oil lotion, and the other is a fancier chocolate orange body butter. The second recipe is something that I found on Pinterest, and I won't be sharing the recipe itself, rather my opinion on it, and other tips and tricks for the recipe. I'll link back to the website where the content was posted. I hope you can try these recipes for yourselves, and happy gifting!

This whipped coconut oil body lotion takes minutes to make, and you only need one ingredient! It's moisturizing on the skin, and it's not harsh or anything, so even the people with the most sensitive skin can still use it.

Monday, December 15, 2014

DIY Pink Salt Shea Butter Soaps | Gift Idea

Everyone uses soap, and these handmade soap squares are a little extra something for a nice shower or bath. They're nourishing for the skin, detoxifying, and smell like sweet oranges. Best of all, they're totally customizable and really easy to make at home!

DIY Vanilla sugar cookie scrub | Gift Idea

Body scrubs are a great gift to give because they're not only easy to make, but everyone can use them. I made this recipe a few years ago with trial and error, and I've been giving the scrubs as presents every year since. The body scrub itself smells delicious and sweet, and it's nourishing for the skin. I find that it works especially well on feet, elbows and knees, because those are the places that get the driest in the winter.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

DIY Lavender Bath Salts | Gift idea

The holidays can become very expensive very quickly with all of the gifts that you'll be giving. I personally like to make most of my gifts because I get to save money while giving a more personalized, heartfelt present to each person. Whether you're looking to make a few things last-minute, or you're just looking for a few extra ideas, this blog will be the perfect place to find a lot of bath-and-body related gift ideas in the next week. I'm kickstarting the set of pampering gift ideas with these lavender scented bath salts. They're pretty, they smell nice, they're easy to make and they're cost-effective... what more could you ask for?

Lush: 3 Reviews

You can probably remember when I bought three different bath products at Lush a little while back... I wrote that post (you can read it here) before I had the chance to try any of the products, so I thought I'd write a little follow-up post about my thoughts on them :)

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

DIY Sewn Felt Ornaments

I'm so sorry that I've missed five days of blogmas already! I've been so, so busy with homework and concerts that I just didn't have time to blog. I've changed the "rules" a bit because I won't be able to blog every single day... I'll just make sure that I have 24 posts up by Christmas :) Anyway, let's get on with the post...

Decorating for Christmas is always really exciting. I especially love cute ornaments, so I thought that I'd make some myself this year! I sewed all of them using felt, so if you've never sewn before, you may want to make these with someone that knows how to sew (I'm no good at explaining how to sew, so don't try to rely on me!)

To learn how to tie the knots at the beginning and end of your sewing, watch this video: (click here)

For all of these ornaments, you will need:
  • Felt in various colours
  • Regular thread in matching colours
  • Embroidery thread in black and whatever other colours you want
  • Pins
  • An embroidery needle
  • Ribbon
  • Fabric scissors
  • Cotton stuffing
  • Paper, pencil/pen and scissors for patterns

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Christmas Garlands | DIY Decorating

The first holiday garland idea that I want to share uses handmade felt balls in various colours. The concept is very simple, but the result is unique, homey and festive. It's a great craft to do while watching TV, because the same simple movements are repeated over and over to create the felt balls.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Getting your skin through a breakout | skincare tips

We've all been there... there's a big event coming up in a week and BAM! A breakout. And it's a bad one too. As much as we want the acne to just disappear on its own (and quickly!), it takes time and care. Here are nine tips that work for me when I'm battling breakouts. Try as many tips from here and around the internet, and you'll most likely find success with a few of the methods!

Monday, December 01, 2014

Introducing: BLOGMAS!

I'm sure we've all heard YouTubers talking about vlogmas... When they vlog every day leading up to Christmas. I really love writing blog posts, so I thought I'd join in on the fun... I'm going to try my best to put up as many post as I can until Christmas! It will be a lot of work, but it'll make me so happy; hopefully it will make you happy too! I have a whole lot of DIYs, recipes, beauty tips and Christmas-themed posts in store, so stay tuned and get pumped... It's Christmas time!! :) 

Until my first post tomorrow, enjoy some pictures that I took at Christmas time last year :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Advent Calendar of Cards | Christmas Gift Ideas

Christmas present-giving can be tricky when the person you're giving them to lives far away. This idea is perfect for friends and family that live farther away, because it can be made as small and light as you need for easy shipping. The various cards and little gifts can be easily personalized, and they're super easy and fun to put together!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

My Current Skincare Routine | Facewash and toner

You might remember that I wrote a post about the moisturizers that I use everyday a couple of weeks ago. I haven't yet mentioned the face wash, scrub and toner that I use all the time, so I thought I'd write a follow-up post to complete my skincare routine.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Variations on a Pancake

Pancakes are a fun way to start a Sunday morning brunch. I love making all sorts of breakfast foods on Sundays, and I like to experiment with the ingredients to create new and exciting flavours and textures. Last Sunday, I made pancakes, and added various ingredients that I found in the kitchen to make them more interesting and fun. Here are some of the variations that I've tried so far.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Product Empties

It takes me while to get through products, but there comes a time when they all start to run out. Over the past month, I've had to stop using these five amazing products, and I wrote my thoughts on each one below.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Just a little Lush Haul

Lush is one of those stores that almost every beauty blogger has talked about. Especially around the fall and winter, I read and hear so many great things about their bath bombs, bubble bars and melts. Oddly enough, I've never tried a Lush product myself, so I thought I'd give it a go and experience some of the amazing baths that my favourite bloggers rave about. Here are my first three Lush purchases :)

Saturday, November 08, 2014

My Current Skincare Routine | Moisterizer

I've mentioned before how important skincare is to me. My face is prone to acne and redness, so I do as much as I can to prevent that, and to keep my skin hydrated, smooth and soft. Moisturizing lotions and creams play a big role in the health of my skin, so I decided that I would share the two that I'm currently using.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

My current favourite lip colours

Autumn is the perfect season to bust out the deep berry-toned and red lip colours. Personally, I never wore lipstick until this year, but now that I do, I've found some colours for fall that I absolutely adore. Here are the four lipsticks that I've been loving most this season.

Monday, November 03, 2014

Dr Teal's Bubble Bath

Taking baths is just another joy of the colder months. A couple of days ago, my mom found this lavender scented bubble bath at Target when we were there shopping together. Nobody in my family takes baths that often—we like to try and save water and money—but we do love to indulge and relax once in a while. With this in mind, we decided to buy the product and give it a try... the bubble bath sounded fun, relaxing, and it was only $5.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Liebster Blog Award Nomination

I've never done an award or tag before, but I thought that the Liebster award was so sweet, and a good chance for my readers to get to know me a bit better. Liebster is a german word that means sweetheart, beloved person or darling. Thank you so much to Nicole from Hey, Let's Makeup for nominating me :) 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

First impressions: Bioré deep pore charcoal cleanser

A few weeks ago, my sister found a sample for the Bioré Deep Pore Cleanser in a Seventeen Magazine that she got, and she gave it to me. I tried it as soon as I could, and I was both happy and disappointed with the results. Here are my first impressions :)

Monday, October 13, 2014

DIY Autumn burlap bunting

If you can't already tell by my blog banner, I love bunting. I think that it's so cute, and it's a great way to decorate a plain space. This autumn bunting is made of burlap, and is completely customizable to your personal taste. Everything—from the size of the triangles to the word it creates—can be personalized. I hope you enjoy making this festive craft as much as I did!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Skincare picks: La Roche Posay

I don't use these products everyday, because they actually belong to my mom. They're just so good that I end up using them when my skin really needs some help. The foaming face wash, toning water and lotion really help to get my skin back where I want it to be when it gets a little bit out of hand. To be honest, this combination of products have greatly reduced the number of breakouts that I have, as well as lessened the intensity of them. Not only do they help me with any bumpiness or redness, the products have a pleasant smell, and fell great on the skin!

La Roche Posay is a great brand for people with sensitive skin like me, and the prices average around $35 per product. I find that this is great because it is slightly cheaper than something that you might buy at a store like Sephora, yet the quality is still just as great. Even if your budget is really low like mine is, I think that it's definitely worth saving up for a product or two, especially if your skin is sensitive to cheaper drugstore products. Remember that healthy looking skin actually needs to be healthy; if you're going to splurge on something, splurge on the skincare products to keep your base healthy and clear... makeup can come after. 

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Get Cozy for Fall

After a long sumer of fun and hot weather, it's great to just cuddle up in bed when the cooler weather rolls in. Here are some ways I take full advantage of the season and stay warm and cozy.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

My autumn dress

Finding a dress that fits you perfectly and makes you feel confident and happy is a great feeling. Being someone who is tall and skinny with long legs, finding clothes that fit well can be difficult, especially because long legs mean that most skirts are very short on me. (Even this one is!) However I got lucky and found this amazing dress at Aritzia. It's normally around $90, but I got it on sale for forty dollars, which was a huge bonus, because I really fell in love with it when I tried it on.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

My week in (autumn-themed) Instagram photos

I recently got Instagram, and I've been using it quite a bit to post some of my photos for people to see. (obviously, hahaha.) I thought I'd share some of the photos here, on my blog as well, because they are mostly autumn-themed, and I feel like the photos really capture a few small joys of this beautiful season. I hope you enjoy the photos! 

*All photos were taken on my camera and some were edited a bit... none were taken on my phone*

You can find me on Instagram here if you like the photos:

The sky was just so beautiful and blue, I couldn't resist taking a photo of it.
I took this photo of the autumn sunset from the middle of the road, and I just thought that it was so pretty and seasonal, especially with the car in it.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Wine-coloured nails for fall

 When it gets to autumn, my colour palette changes to dark reds, khaki greens and beiges, purples, and oranges. I usually apply this palette to my nails as well, and lately, I've been really loving a wine colour by Sally Hansen. It's a beautiful, deep red colour that looks amazing paired with a khaki-green jacket and dark blue skinny jeans. It can be used nicely for autumn looks, but paired with white or silver, the colour could easily be transformed into a Christmas look as well.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

My bedside table

People use bedside tables for different purposes, but personally, I use it as a convenient place to keep the things that I use the most. I also love to decorate and personalize it, because it's the first thing I look at every morning.

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Autumn Scentbook 2014

Candles are a great way to make your home or bedroom cozier, and smelling great for autumn. Shopping for them can be very fun—walking into stores to smell all of the different scents can be exciting... and overwhelming. Finding great scents can be time consuming, because there are just so many options to try and choose from. Try smelling the candles on this list next time you're at the store, rather than smelling every single option available. Choose your favourites out of this selection... I've already done the sniffing around for you. This can save you so much time and hassle, and I promise, these candles all smell amazing!
Disclaimer: I haven't burned all of these candles before, I'm judging them by what I smelled in store, much like what any person would do when searching for a candle to buy.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Introducing: akinokiki's guide to autumn 2014

I've been working on this series for quite a while now, so I'm really excited to share it with everyone! Autumn is my favourite season, so I've had so many ideas that I've been putting together as a whole bunch of fall-themed posts for the next couple of months. Some of these posts are things like:
•Room decoration ideas
•Autumn products
The first post in this series is coming very soon, so stay tuned!

Tuesday, September 02, 2014

$20 Gift Idea for Coffee Lovers

We all have a coffee lover in our life, whether it's a friend or a family member. Next time one of these people has a birthday (or other celebration), treat them to a great gift... it will only cost you twenty dollars!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

5 Tips for keeping your mind fresh at school

These tips are written for your last moments of summer break, but they are great for refreshing your mind on a weekend during the school year as well. Reserve some time to complete some of these ideas, and you'll feel a lot more energized at school.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Three Mascaras for Back to School

It's that time of the year again—back to school. Whether you're already in school or heading back soon, it's great to think about the makeup that you'll be wearing, if any. Here are my top three mascaras to wear to school, in no particular order. They're all great for different things, so have a read to see what suits you best!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Five drugstore products that I've never found

I love to read blogs and watch YouTube videos about beauty and makeup, among other things. This inevitably leads to me hearing people raving about certain products, which makes me want to try them myself. Obviously I don't just go out and buy all of those products (really... who has money for that?), but I like to find them in stores so I can add them to my wishlist. What's sad is when the products just aren't available where I are; I can't try samples or see them in store because they don't stock them where I live. Here are five "product finds" that I've never actually found... drugstore edition.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Everyday natural eyeshadows

These two cream eyeshadows are great for subtle, natural and simple looks, and are very affordable.

As you can see from the swatches, these two shades are beautiful and shimmery, and very natural. Because of this, I love to use them for an eye-opening, pretty but subtle look.