Spring style Revamp: Three Runway Looks For Less!

TEXT: Chris Zaghi and Claire Ball

Gone are the days when the standard polyester pantsuit or pencil skirt were the go-to for every woman at the office. The new 9-5 wardrobe should tastefully represent your personal style, as well as the atmosphere of your workplace. The same goes for your beauty routine. You want to look professional and put together without foregoing some extra oomph to your everyday makeup look.

When looking toward the weekend, most of the times all you want to do is throw on a t-shirt and sweats, but hear us out. Loungewear is great for picking up groceries, walking the dog, and laying about and watching Netflix. But sometimes the weekend calls for a little pizazz! An easy weekend solution is to keep your makeup minimal instead of your clothes. Why not amp up your weekend style with some comfy show stoppers that’ll have all your friends begging you for fashion advice and opt for a minimal makeup look?

Now evening wear and formalwear can be a bit tough. There are tons of rules and guidelines on what’s right and what’s wrong. No white at weddings, no stretch fabrics, avoid things that are too casual. All of these rules can make it almost impossible to find something that won’t be gasped at by the rest of night’s guests. Luckily, over the last few years, how we look at formal attire has changed drastically. Outfits that would have never gone over well at formal events are now slowly being accepted. And more outlandish and gaudy designs are being celebrated at events instead of being shunned. This opens up a lot of doors to what you can wear to a formal event this year. So keep your makeup relatively classic with a bit of a twist and let your outfit do the talking!

Office Ready: Chanel vs. Zara

Photos: Vogue Runway – Zara

Zara Textured Weave Cardigan &  Zara Structured Mini Skirt With Ruffle:

$135.80 online or in store

Zara has a long-standing tradition of providing the fashion-forward masses with reasonably priced and well-made clothing inspired by the world’s most exclusive luxury labels. The clothing you find in most Zara boutiques tends to lean toward a very elegant and trend-positive style. And when looking for the perfect 9-5 outfit, elegance, assertiveness, and freshness are key. For example, Zara has recently added this beautiful tweed set to their lookbook. Elegantly trimmed with a fire engine red hem and buttoned with faux pearl accents. This classic style mirrors the suits Mademoiselle Coco made famous decades ago, but with an added flirty twist. This especially helps with keeping your 9-5 wardrobe fresh and exciting (and you can mix and match the set too!)

Office Makeup look: Blush(ing)

Photos: Vouge – MAC Cosmetics

MAC Casual Colour in Hi Jinks: $31.00 in store or online

In case you were absent during the ’80s, now is the time to embrace a retro throwback in your beauty routine. The spring/summer runway was both subtly and extravagantly reminiscent of the decade and one of the most popular makeup tributes to it was bright blush and lips. Designers like Kenzo, Reem Acra, and Adam Selman all participated in various versions of the retro blush. This look from the Chanel spring/summer 2017 runway features a strong, bright coral cheek contour with a hint of coral on the lips to evenly brighten up the face. MAC has a line of creamy multipurpose lip and cheek stains that are perfect for recreating this look for the office on your own! Just trace the cream colour up the cheekbones, and around the eyes. If you’re really feeling the 80s vibes, finish it off by dabbing a little bit on the lips for an added pop of colour. This beauty look screams springtime while also keeping it professional and pretty for work.

Weekend Chic: A.P.C vs. ASOS

Photos: Vogue Runway – ASOS

ASOS Denim Crop Jacket with Ruffle HemASOS Ridley Skinny Jeans

$138.62 + Shipping

Weekend outfits often tend to lean towards whatever is the most casual (and clean) that’s laying around your room. This can lead to some serious drab moments when going out and hitting up the town. Luckily, ASOS has a slew of different dressy yet uber-casual options for you to beef up your weekend wardrobe. Now, most people don’t want to wear a blouse on the weekend. No problem. Denim is your best friend in this case. The denim jacket and jeans give you the same refined, high fashion silhouette that the A.P.C ensemble gives you, just without the high fashion price tag. The pulled in waist and ruffles paired with matching skinny jeans give this look a fresh and expressive take on your traditional Canadian tuxedo.

Weekend Makeup look: No-Makeup Makeup

Photos: Vouge – Sephora

Laura Mercier Illuminating Tinted Moisturizer SPF 20: $55.00 in store or online

The bare skin “no-makeup” look has been seen before, but this season it seems that it was more popular than ever. With designers like Isabel Marant, Michael Kors, Tommy Hilfiger, and Christian Dior all displaying a minimalist approach to makeup on the runway, there is no denying the obvious appeal of the “no-makeup” look. Radiant, clear skin like this look from the Stella McCartney spring 2017 show, is the perfect way to keep it casual, fresh, and chic on the weekend. Just apply a good tinted moisturizer, like Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer with SPF 20, to even out your skin and bring out your natural radiance with a dewy glow. If you need to cover some blemishes, just touch them up with a little bit of concealer and blend it out. To complete the ultimate natural look, brush up your eyebrows and you’re good to go!

A Beautiful Evening Out: Gucci vs. Free People

Photos: Vogue Runway – Free People

Garden Life Maxi Dress$327.50 online or in store

Evening wear can be a tricky thing to get right. With all the guidelines surrounding what to wear, most people opt for something black and that’s that. However, modern evening wear doesn’t have to end up being so uptight. One big trend we’ve been seeing are florals — explosions of colourful blooms completing outfits in exotic prints and embroidery. And that’s just the right amount of punch your closet needs to fulfill all your formalwear desires. Free People does a wonderful job of merging elegance and hippie-chic in a neat little package, and the Garden Life maxi dress does just that. Mirror the beautiful blooms seen at Gucci this season. The dress is perfect for this year’s upcoming wedding season and any other spring/summer event that requires a little evening magic. Who knows, maybe you can even turn a dull winter party into a tropical paradise if you have the guts to do it.

Evening Makeup look: The Smudgy Eye

Photos: Vogue – Sephora

Marc Jacobs Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner: $31.00 in store or online

This “still wearing last night’s makeup” look is the new smokey eye. The spring/summer runway was all about the smudgy eye. Runway looks from Rag & Bone, Christopher Kane, and Balmain featured similar versions of the black, ashy, smudged out liner look. Pairing this makeup with the floral Garden Life Maxi Dress adds an edgier vibe for a perfect night out look. The best part about this beauty trend is that you no longer have to stress about drawing a straight line! Use Marc Jacobs Gel Eye Crayon Eyeliner to rim your eyes, and using a smudging brush, Q-tip, or your fingertip, smudge out the liner to create an “already worn out” smudged and smokey look.

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ICYMI: Toronto’s First Cosmetic Tattoo Shop Opens

On Dundas St. West, around the corner form Kensington Market and nestled next to a hair salon is a small shop promising cosmetic tattooing, the first of its kind in Toronto. The shop, called The Good Geisha, opened on June 18th.

Owners and artists Amber Gotzmeister and Anna Chow had glasses of pink champagne ready to greet new customers, or anyone who was wandering by and just wanted to take a look. The modest-sized shop was clean and brightly lit, with two full work stations in an open space.

Amber Gotzmeister (L) and Anna Chow
Amber Gotzmeister (L) and Anna Chow

The walls are lined with colourful art and at the back of the shop is a giant mural of a geisha. White, pink, red and black are the dominant colours. With those descriptors in mind, some may call up the impression of a beauty parlour, but make no mistake. This is exclusively a tattoo shop. In fact, this is what Anna and Amber want to stress to clients the most — these are real tattoos.

“It will fade faster than anywhere else on your body,” says Amber, “but it is supposed to be permanent.”

The owners say they want to to educate the public about cosmetic tattooing by getting rid of misconceptions and showing what a well-done job looks like.

But before we get there, we should talk about what cosmetic tattooing actually is.

Anna and Amber lay it out in two categories: micro-blading and micro-pigmentation. Micro-blading is tattooing done by hand, using an instrument that has multiple small needles. The tool is used to pull pigment through the skin, in a stroking motion, to add the colour. At The Good Geisha they use it strictly for eyebrows. Micro-pigmentation is done by machine and is used in every other cosmetic tattooing procedure, whether it be eyeliner, lip liner, areola pigmentation or on the scalp to add the illusion of thickness in place of thinning hair.

Amber checking Chelsea's eyebrows for balance.
Amber checking Chelsea’s eyebrows for balance.

This is what one will hear when they ask an expert on a definition. Pretty straightforward. Anyone looking on their own, however, may get a far different impression.

A quick online search can reveal blue, orange or green eyebrows because of cosmetic tattooing, or a horror story told by a woman who had a less-than-desirable outcome from a procedure. Both Amber and Anna are very familiar with these bad outcomes.

“I do a lot of corrective work,” says Amber. “I love it. Tattooing someone’s eyebrows that have never been done is boring. Correction is way more exciting.”

Amber mentioned a nightmare scenario involving a Groupon and a $100 brow tattoo job. Correcting the brows costs seven times that, mostly because they had been done so poorly in the first place. She says there are two reasons for this. First is a lack of education.

“A lot of people feel that a two or three-day training course is enough,” says Amber. “It really isn’t. The other big thing is the colour of the skin. Colour theory for cosmetic tattooing purposes is completely different to other colour theory.”

The owners are members of the Society of Permanent Cosmetic Professionals, a voluntary society that provides a code of ethics for its members. Amber says there is no other regulation for cosmetic tattooing, so it was important to have a standard to hold themselves to.

Watching Anna work during the live demonstrations held at the opening, it’s easy to see how professional they are. Anna donned a mask and gloves, made sure everything was sterilized and kept stopping to ask the client if she was okay with the pain and with the progress.

(According to the client, Chelsea Chan, the tattooing sensation was far from pleasant, but low in terms of pain.)

Anna tattooing client Chelsea Chan's eyebrows.
Anna tattooing client Chelsea Chan’s eyebrows.

Amber and Anna met at the Micro-pigmentation Centre here in Toronto. Amber was an instructor, Anna was a student.

“I actually came from a background in finance,” says Anna, “but my passion was always in the arts and I was interested in facial anatomy. I’ve always liked touching someone’s face or working with symmetry.”

Upon deciding to pursue cosmetic tattooing, Anna immediately dove into school at the Mico-pigmentation Centre, where she was taught by Amber. Amber came from a different background. She initially trained as an aesthetician, but became interested in cosmetic tattooing following a recommendation from a client. Having worked in the cosmetic tattooing industry for 10 years, Amber began at a time when cosmetic tattooing was more taboo.

“Nobody talked about it. We would have women come in their sunglasses, trench coat and hat,” she laughs. “It was a very ‘hush hush’ kind of industry.” Two years ago, Amber opted to take a break from full-time referrals and began to teach at the Micro-pigmentation Centre. In the back of her mind, she was thinking about opening her own shop just for tattooing.

“When Anna came to the program,” says Amber. “I said to my husband that night, ‘I found the girl that I’m going to work with. I don’t know where or how, but I found her.’ I hadn’t even said anything to her yet.”

Amber did ask Anna to work with her once she found the shop location. Anna agreed. The two became partners one day and signed the lease for the shop the next.

Amber and Anna say before becoming The Good Geisha, the shop was a hair salon that relocated a few stores up. Both women say they had to do a complete renovation of the store in order to get ready.

“It was a disaster,” says Amber. “This had been a hair salon for 15 years. There was hair plastered to the walls, the ceiling, even stuck in the outlets.”

Amber and Anna got the keys to the shop of May 18th and worked 16 to 18-hour days to get the place in shape in time for the opening. Other than help from Amber’s parents to lay the tiles, the women did the renovations by themselves.

Special deal and free champagne were offered to new clients.
Special deal and free champagne were offered to new clients.

Now that the shop is finished, the focus turns to bringing in clients and getting the tattoos started. Anna says she sees lots of older women who are losing their eyesight, but also young women who don’t have the time so they get the tattoos for convenience.

While they are open to receive, the owners had warning words about wanting anything trendy, and going for something that suits your natural features.

“If someone comes in asking for two-inch eyebrows, I’ll say no,” says Amber. “You may not even want that in a year. It works when you’re nineteen, but can you imagine having those thick eyebrows when you’re 90?”



There’s a new brand in town, and it’s coming straight to us, in a department store near you! European brand Teeez Cosmetics, is bringing its brightness and flare just in time for spring. Sometime in April or May, the line will be launched and sold at Hudson Bay locations in Toronto, the GTA, Vancouver, Calgary, and Montreal, but can currently by purchased at http://thebay.com.

The Teeez line incorporates four beautiful collections: Sugar Rush, Desert Glow, La Isla Chic, and Beloved Skin. Each one has its own unique packaging and dazzle, that I’m sure will bring out the inner tease in you. They have products for your eyes, lips, face and nails, and everything that you would ever need in a makeup collection. So without further ado, I introduce to you some Teeez Cosmetics favourites, that I am sure you will fall in love with as I already did!

La Isla Chic: Island Palette Eyeshadow in Take a Dive


When you think of a beautiful, warm, sunny island, do bright, vibrant colours come to mind? If so, then this is the perfect name for this eyeshadow palette. The Island Palette Eyeshadow in Take a Dive, is a stunning heavily pigmented blue, that will give your eyes a long lasting shimmer and vibrance that it needs for this season. This creamy shadow is also available in seven other colours.

PRICE: $23.00

Sugar Rush: Cloud Nine Eyeliner in Energy or Electric Aqua


SUGARRUSH_EYELINER_ELECTRIC AQUA_OPENColoured eyeliner is definitely making a comeback, because black is just so…basic. Why not amp up your look and go for something a little more unique  to really make your eyes stand out?  The Cloud Nine Eyeliner in Energy is a deep blue that’ll give your eyes that defining and edgy look. If you rather go for a softer look, then you can try the same liner but in Electric Aqua. This colour will make your eyes look extra fresh and bright with its beautiful aqua tone. If you aren’t ready to step out of your comfort zone with these vivid colours, there are ten other options to choose from.

PRICE: $24.00

Sugar Rush: Spectrum of Stars Eyeshadow in Bleached Jeans


Here is another eyeshadow, but this time from the Sugar Rush Collection. The Spectrum of Stars Eyeshadow in Bleached Jeans is a complete 180 to the Island Palette Eyeshadow. It is a much lighter blue, but will still leave your eyes with a lasting shimmer, and stunning pigmentation. These shadows are also infused with Argon Oil to keep your skin moisturized and smooth. Want a deeper colour or something even lighter? Well do not fret because there are seventeen other colours to choose from.

PRICE: $24.00

Desert Glow: Desert Metals Mascara in Sapphire Nights


Just like how coloured eyeliner is making a comeback, well so is coloured mascara! All I know is, some of you are going to be rocking some radiant eye looks once the sun is out for good. The Desert Metals Mascara in Sapphire Nights is a very deep blue that is sure to give your lashes the utmost volume with a pinch of flirtiness. It is also available in Midnight Sky, and your basic black.

PRICE: $27.00

Desert Glow: Mysterious Crystals Eyeliner in Lapis Lazuli

Eyeliner Lovely Lapis Lazuli

This eyeliner is slightly different from the Sugar Rush Collection liner. The Mysterious Crystals Eyeliner in Lapis Lazuli is a creamy liner that takes about 45 seconds to dry. On the opposite end, there is a diffuser that may be used to smoke out your liner to give your eyes a more dramatic and intense look. It is also available in the colour Smokey Quartz.

PRICE: $22.00

All Products are currently available at http://thebay.com