Back-to-School Must-haves: What I Wish I Had While in School

Back-to-school season is always a long and tiring process. As we grow older, our style evolves, and we right our wrongs when it comes to poor makeup, clothing, and beauty choices. It’s an ongoing evolution and it’s fun! If we drown out that little voice in the back of our heads that tells us there is no ethical form of consumption under capitalism, there is much joy to be found while shopping for back-to-school essentials.

I learned a lot during my four years of University, and I don’t mean in terms of expanding my knowledge of a specific area of study, but I learned a lot about myself and what I could and couldn’t get away with. (Every six months I try to convince myself to get bangs, and every six months I have to have an inner argument. So far I’ve always talked myself out of it.)

As I come freshly into September with my undergrad collecting dust on my wall, I bring a list of things that I would love to share with you that I wish I had while I was attending school. With hopes that these items will bring you some help down the road (like I wish I had), keep scrolling to get the full list.

BEAUTY

Glossier – Boy Brow

I have a love/hate relationship with my eyebrows. As a kid, they were untamed and unruly, and I really didn’t know how to take care of them. Eventually, it became fashion-forward to have thin eyebrows, and in order to fit in with those in my class, I followed suit. It was not a good look. Now that I’m older, I’ve realized the importance of eyebrows and how they shape your face. Boy Brow by Glossier is perfect as it gives great definition to my brows for a standout look while keeping everything in place.

Becca – First Light Filter Face Primer

If you’re like me, you often turn off your alarm clock by hitting snooze every five minutes. When you make this decision you are often making an unconscious decision to give something up in the morning: your make-up routine, breakfast, or your ability to grab some coffee before class without being late. We can’t have it all. On the days I’m especially lazy, I opt out of my full makeup routine and leave the house just wearing Becca’s First Light Filter Face Primer. It gets rid of any puffiness I have, allowing my skin to look more energized and hydrated for the day.

CLOSET

Fenty x Puma – Fall 2017 Ready-to-Wear

Rihanna has always reigned supreme and it was only a matter of time until she blessed us with her very own clothing line. Who wouldn’t want to dress like Rihanna? During my time in school, I was blessed with her albums, her amazing street style, and even saw her in a concert in my first year of University. The Fenty x Puma Fall 2017 Ready-to-Wear collection is the ultimate inspiration for students lounging at the library and getting dressed for a night out with friends.

Dolce & Gabbana – Polar Bear Backpack

In school, you’re always on the go and need a reliable bag to get you from point A to B. The best part about this bag is that you are never going to want to put it down. I mean, look how cute it is. This little guy can hold all your essentials (notebooks, pens, pencils, etc.), and/or be a great source of comfort after spending a long day studying in isolation when you just need a hug.

BEDROOM 

Terrarium

If you have trouble keeping something alive (like a pet or yourself), a terrarium is the perfect household object to liven up your bedroom and show people that there is life under your stacks of books and cobwebs. Seriously, it’s nearly impossible to kill these things (even though I’ve done it), as they hardly require any care to stay alive and add an earthy quality to any bedroom.

Bed Canopy

Have you ever wanted to feel like a princess? I can’t think of anything more Queen-like than accessorizing your bedroom with a bed canopy. It’s a great alternative if you want minimal accessorizing to your bedroom, but want to add a little colour and design to make it pop. Who wouldn’t want to be relaxing under this?

ELECTRONICS

Wireless Speakers

If you take away anything from this list, remember this: wireless speakers are a must. There’s no worse feeling than realizing, the night of your big housewarming party, that your friends have all flaked and forgot their speakers at home. It’s definitely an investment, but it will make all the difference.

Amazon

Fitbit Alta HR

It’s really hard to get to the gym during exam season. Scratch that. It’s really hard to get to the gym, ever. We spend a large part of our days getting from home to work without realizing how much activity we actually do, and the Fitbit Alta is a great way to monitor that. You can set little goals for yourself and follow them through with its easy to use interface.

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The Most Stylish and Stunning Drag Instagram Looks of 2017… So Far

Ever since the rise of social media and queer-centered programming such as RuPaul’s Drag Race (airs Fridays at 8 pm if anyone is interested). The global appreciation for drag and drag culture has shot to astronomical heights over the last few years. However, drag has been an important form of entertainment and expression since ancient times. These days, drag and drag culture have expanded to become a very inclusive and supportive network of artists that bring their own styles and flavours to the broad spectrum of drag culture. For this round of Top 10 Instagram Moments, we’ve found a group of queens and drag artists whose stunning personal styles and personas have made for some really amazing Instagram moments. Here are the most stylish and stunning drag moments of 2017 so far!

@ALLABOUTVALENTINA

Valentina‘s has quickly stolen the hearts of drag race fans and social media perusers alike. With her infectious personality and uplifting optimism, Valentina has already shown herself to be a clear front-runner among the shows pick of stunning queens… and only two episodes too! Apart from her showstopping appearances on Drag Race, Valentina recently appeared on Access Hollywood for an interview about her career and experiences on drag race. It seems that this queen is making herself right at home in the spotlight where she belongs.

 

@RYBURKE

A staple of modern club kid culture, Ryan Burke is the go to Instagram account to follow if you’d like to see everything from Leigh Bowery inspired costumes to high fashion glamour looks. This look right here really encapsulates what Ryan is all about; graphic avant-garde looks are what she does best!

@BIGANDMILKY

Milk is another queen that came from the new era of club kids. Her conceptual, and more recently, gender fluid and androgynous looks always have either a political or social motive behind them. Recently, Milk showed the world just how she felt about her home country’s current president. Now, this look isn’t the most glamorous, but it serves to show that drag can be more than just female impersonation. It can be a cry for justice and truth in uncertain times.

 

@SASHAVELOUR

It seems like this season of Drag Race is going to have it’s most recognisable, copied, and envied queens of all the seasons. One perfect example of this is Sasha Velour. This New York city drag icon has been the face of Brooklyn for years now. Proving that New York produces some of the best drag acts in the world. And for good reason, just look at her fashion sense. It looks like she has Manhattan oversized Comme Des Garcon realness on lock.

 

@SIGOURNEY.BEAVER

The most beautiful thing about today’s drag scene is that inclusivity has become a main focal point for many of the world’s queer havens. In the past, drag itself was a strictly cis white male profession., now, drag has evolved to include everyone. No matter their age, body shape, skin colour, religion, and gender. Yes, that’s right, even gender too! Never has there been such a rise in women taking interest in drag like there is now. Take the ever stunning Sigourney Beaver. Who’s out of this world glamour and curvaceous body were the perfect mix to create this picture perfect Jessica Rabbit meets Daenerys Targaryen outfit.

 

@PEARLIAISON

Queen Pearl is part of the iconic Drag Race alumni of season 6. Along with winner Violet Chachki, Pearl is regarded as one of the most original and iconic drag queens in recent history. Recently, Pearl drag persona has evolved from vava voom blonde bombshell to fully realised drag artist. In this look, you can see her vast theatrical influences. Pearl has everything covered here, from Venetian carnival sleeves to a gorgeous Midsummers Night Dream headpiece.

 

@PEPPERMINT247

Peppermint landed her rightful place on this list for something extra special and important. Peppermint is actually the first contestant in Drag Race history to enter the competition as a transwoman. Unlike other contestants on the show who began their transitions after their appearances on the show, Peppermint walked into the workroom as a proud (and exceptionally stunning) transwoman of colour. Here we see Peppermint giving a taste of black culture and beauty, 1980’s flare, and New York spunk all in one.

 

@RYANXHEMMINGE

Like I mentioned before, Drag and Drag culture are no longer identified in a singular form. These days, everyone can express their individuality through makeup and costume. Take Instagram user Ryan H. Who’s stunning makeup looks go far beyond the realm of his Instagram makeup artist contemporaries. I definitely think CoverGirl should open up another more spot on their Cover boy roster for this uber-talented lad.

@CREMEFATALE

More and more women are finding empowerment in their sexuality and femininity by doing drag. Queen Creme Fatale is one of them. With some of the most outrageously beautiful and versatile painting skills. Here we can see the extent of Creme’s skills, serving a high fashion, high glamour club kid fantasy.

@URBANDECAYCOSMETICS

Lastly, we have Urban Decay Cosmetics. Who have realised that queens aren’t just an entertainment highlights anymore but they’re also great business women and marketers as well. With the launch of their  Makeup Meltdown and Rehab cosmetics products, Urban Decay invited queens @THEONLYALASKA5000, @JIGGLYCALIENTEOFFICIAL, @SUTANAMRULL, and @KATYA_ZAMO to test drive their products to see if they work to prep and wipe away the toughest of makeup looks.

Spring ’17 Beauty Must-Haves

The transition into Spring can be a little awkward. With the weather constantly adjusting and changing, it’s hard to dress and prepare yourself accordingly. Often we are so focused on our wardrobe and making it through the wet spring weather, we forget that our beauty routine needs a little bit of sprucing up as well. The cold, wet mornings and milder damp afternoons can take a toll on your skin and makeup, so it is important to make a few minor changes to your routine and ditch the heavy winter products in exchange for something lighter and more refreshing. Luckily, we’ve been blessed with a relatively mild winter (for the most part) but in case you’re still struggling to make the transition, here are a few products to help you prepare yourself and add an extra hint of spring into your everyday beauty routine!

Fresh Soy Face Cleanser

This do-it-all cleanser successfully removes makeup while also cleansing the skin of impurities without drying it out. The light gel formula is perfect for all skin types. It gently lathers to clean skin while keeping it balanced, firm, and moisturized (it also smells amazing). This cleanser is definitely a must-have.

Available at Sephora.

Marcelle BB Cream Beauty Balm

Spring is all about being fresh faced. This BB cream is the perfect combination of a lightweight moisturizer, tinted corrector, and makeup base. It can be worn alone as a tinted moisturizer or as a base makeup primer. It evens out skin tone, controls shine, and reduces the appearance of imperfections. Perfect lightweight coverage for Spring!

Available at Shoppers Drug Mart or Marcelle.com.

NUDESTIX Lip + Cheek Pencil

This multitasking pencil is ideal for a fresh-faced minimal makeup look, adding the perfect pop of colour to cheeks and lips. The long-lasting creamy coverage gives a natural looking finish to a fresh-faced look. For the ultimate Spring-time look, try the pencil in the shade “coral/peach.”

Available at Sephora.

Too Faced “Better Than Sex” Mascara

I know this may be a bold statement but, this is by far the best mascara ever! Its non-clumpy formula has the best volume, length, and root-to-tip coverage I’ve experienced in a single mascara. For real, one coat of this on your lashes is all you need to complete the perfect natural spring makeup look.

Available at Shoppers Drug Mart and Sephora.

Essie “B’aha Moment” Nail Polish

Nothing like a fresh manicure to add a little extra spring in your step! Essie’s B’aha Moment from the Spring 2017 collection is the perfect pomegranate pink to complete your spring look.

Available at Shoppers Drug Mart.

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Men and Makeup: Profile on Makeup Artist Kevin Doño aka Lash Glue

TEXT: Andrea Vahrusev

In the past few years with the rise of popular shows such as Ru Paul’s Drag Race and the hiring of male ambassadors for makeup brands such as CoverGirl’s James Charles, men and makeup are becoming an accepted combination. Mass media platforms such as YouTube and Instagram have allowed men who do their makeup to come together and find support from others, breaking away from the binary.

For a long time, makeup has been associated with notions of femininity. Kevin Doño, or also known as Lash Glue, his fabulous alter ego, breaks the gender stereotypes associated with the art of makeup. Growing up in El Salvador as a queer person with a community that lacked support for the LGBT, Kevin was unable to express himself to his full extent. After much research, however, he found his way up north to Toronto where he began his studies at OCAD University in 2015.

Being openly queer in Toronto was much easier for him and especially at a university that encourages self-expression. Kevin had always dabbled in the art of makeup with his daily routine of foundation, baking, and the likes, but his interest in drag and extravagant makeup looks transferred over into a new-found career.

In 2016, Kevin began working for NYX Cosmetics. His passion for makeup and the combination of working for the cosmetics brand gave him the idea of starting an Instagram portfolio of makeup looks. Currently, Kevin posts a series of looks from subtle freckles to flamboyant colours under the user @lashglue.

Much of the makeup inspiration Kevin and many men come from the drag scene. However, drag was pushed underground for a long time until shows such as RuPaul’s Drag Race aired, making drag mainstream and shedding a positive light on it. Drag queens tend to feature strong makeup looks that include sharp contour and dense eyeliner. Drag could even be credited as bringing men and makeup together.

In the new age, men and makeup are becoming an art form that is accepted. Gender constraints are just social constructs and Kevin fights it one look at a time.

Makeup Inspiration: My biggest inspiration is the club scene from New York. Club kids have a very particular eye for design and aesthetics because makeup is not only art but also design. The looks I create borrow elements from graphic design principals such as balance, tension, negative, rhythm and space.

Three favourite beauty products:

1) NYX Matte Liner

2) Dior Air-flash Foundation

3) Kat Von D Metal Matte Palette (Limited edition)

Favourite quote from Ru Paul’s Drag Race: “‘Bitch I am from Chicago’ She was not from Chicago…”

Follow Kevin on Instagram:

@lashglue

@kevinfromfinance

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5 Makeup Tips To Change Your Look From Day to Night

When you’re rushing to finish up at the office before making a quick escape across town to meet up with some friends for after work drinks, you don’t have a lot of time to spare on your appearance. After all, you don’t want to be late and keep your hangry friends waiting for you. People lead busy and hectic lives. Between work, commuting, social calendars, Netflix binge watching, and date nights, it’s a miracle we even have a minute to find clean underwear, let alone do our makeup. So what are we to do when we’re stuck at the office until 5:43pm, but are set to meet friends for happy hour at 6? Here are 5 quick ways to refresh your makeup and make the most of your touchup.

Add Drama with Eyeliner

Eyeliner can make all the difference in your look — especially if you’re crunched for time. All you need is a good liquid eyeliner like Kat Von D’s Tattoo Liner or a gel liner like Tarte Clay Pot Waterproof Liner to create a bold cat eye.

Add Boldness with Lipstick

If you have no time for anything else, switch up your lipstick. Swap your chap stick covered lips for something with a bit more colour or a matte finish. Making a statement with a classic red lip like Rimmel’s Lasting Finish Matte by Kate Moss in shade 107 or even a neutral matte lip colour like MAC cosmetics matte shade in “Really Me” can go a long way with a bit of eyeliner. It’s the simplest way to transform your look. In my opinion, less is more. You don’t need anything crazy to refresh your makeup — plus, nudes are really in right now.

Add Depth with Eyeshadow

If eyeliner isn’t your forte, or you’re already rocking the winged liner look, you’ve got the perfect reason to create a quick smoky eye. After all, nothing says GNO like a dark smokey eye. Darker smokey shadow pallets like MAC Peachluxe Veluxe Pearl Fusion Shadow or Smashbox Cover Shot Golden Hour Eye Pallet. These pallets are perfect because they’re small enough to have in your purse on-the-go, and they have a variety of shades to create a seamless smokey eye. If you’re already wearing eyeliner, smudge it out a little bit for an even bolder smokey eye effect. Don’t be afraid to bring your smokey eye to the bottom and use your finger to smudge it out too!

Add Glow with Highlighter

Light up the night with a hint of strobing. Keep an illuminating highlighter stick like NARS Multiple Stick in Copacabana, in your purse or office desk to enhance your glow and make the high points of your face — cheekbones, nose, cupid’s bow, and under the brow — shimmer in the night.

Add Definition with Contour

Chiseling your face with a quick contour is a great way to take your makeup from day to night. If you know you’re going to need it, keep a contour-highlighting kit like Anastasia Beverly Hills Contour Kit readily available. If that’s too much to have on hand, you can easily use a bronzer like Too Faced Chocolate Soleil Matte Bronzer to work your angles and create the same effect.

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