Manicure Magic

by Jen on Friday, June 29, 2012

I've always had trouble with manicures. I have weak nails, and nothing I do seems to help. In spite of using rubbing alcohol before application, and using quality nail polish and the best top coats on the market, it's been pretty customary for me to get my first chip within a day of application. Last year, I tried an OPI Axxium manicure for my European vacation, but severely damaged nails after removal have since kept me away. I attended London Drug's Fall Beauty Preview Event last week and Red Carpet Manicure's gel polish starter kit was included in our bag of goodies to try. It promised the longevity of a salon gel manicure with the ease and cost-effectiveness of doing it yourself at home. Needless to say, I was intrigued.

{contents of the portable starter kit}
Each kit comes with everything you need to get started (except batteries and manicure basics like a nail file, buffer and orange stick), and easy-to-follow instructions are included. With that in mind and an hour of free time last Friday, I plopped myself down in front of the TV and got to "work".

{nails on Thursday, 6 days after application}
It has been one full week since application, and I couldn't be happier with the results! I've washed dishes every day, typed, and even swam with these nails (my regular manicures always chip when I swim) and they remain un-chipped. They definitely better than anything I could have achieved with regular nail polish.

I also loved not having to wait extra time for polish to dry; after the final curing process, I was all set to go. One word of caution, though: be very careful with your application (and I would recommend curing just a couple of fingers under the light at once). I applied a top coat that was a bit too thick and as a result, it didn't cure properly. The product adhered to my skin and shortly after, some of the polish peeled off (see photos below). Because of this, though, I was able to try my hand at removing the polish. This step requires patience, as it did take me about 15 minutes to get it all off. However, I'm happy to report that my nail remained in good condition after removal!

{left to right: bad first attempt, wrapped foil for removal, nail after removal}
If you have struggled with nail polish staying on, I highly suggest checking this product out. Let me know if you have questions in the comments below and I'll try my best to answer.
The portable introductory kit, seen here, is $79.99 CAD /$59.99 USD. It is good for 20 manicures, working out to a little over $4 a manicure with tax! There are 57 additional shades available at $12 each.
*Phew! That was a long post. I just want to say as a disclaimer that I was not paid or obligated to write about this product. This is not a beauty blog, and I certainly do not claim to know an extensive amount about anything of this nature. However, I do know my own needs as a consumer and what I want. And every so often, I come across a product that I like so much that I feel the need to share!
In completely unrelated news, I just wanted to let you know that today is the last day to enter to win a leather gorjana clutch here!

Bright & Easy

by Jen on Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Although I hardly think that the weather we've been having could be justified as "summer" temperatures, I've been making every excuse to dress in colours that would suggest otherwise. Naturally, this vibrant silk blouse that I found in a consignment shop this past weekend quickly became a favourite piece in my closet. Oh, and the fact that it was such a steal? That just makes it that much sweeter!

Wearing: Prada blouse, Aldo necklace, Jacob shorts (old), YesStyle sandals (c/o, come in lots of colours!), Coach bag (old, c/o)
p.s. have you entered to win a beautiful, and perfect for summer, colour-blocked gorjana clutch yet?

Colourblocked - A gorjana Handbag Giveaway!

by Jen on Monday, June 25, 2012

You already know they make incredibly lovely jewelry, but did you know that gorjana now makes some beautiful, quality leather bags as well? In celebration of the launch of their new site, I've partnered with the California based brand to give away a Mott Pastel Foldover clutch (worth $175). In addition to being versatile and fun, it's made of a soft & slouchy yummy smelling leather. It also features a magnetic closure as well as a separate zipper compartment; you'll want to wear it all summer long. Scroll down for details on how to enter - it's easy!

to enter:
1. follow @gorjana and @herwaisechoice on twitter
2. tweet the following:
"I've entered to win a @gorjana Mott Pastel Foldover Clutch via @herwaisechoice! #herwaisechoiceXgorjana"
3. leave a comment here to let me know you've entered (please include your twitter handle)
that's it!
details: open to residents of USA and Canada. contest runs until this Friday, June 29th, and winner will be announced Monday, July 2nd. good luck!

Wearing: gorjana clutch (c/o), Bardot dress, H&M jacket, Ferragamo belt, BCBGMAXAZRIA cuff, Zara shoes, House of Harlow 1960 sunniesLink

Colour Pops

by Jen on Friday, June 22, 2012

T.Babaton Meredith Blouse / Kate Spade Earrings / Roksanda Illincic Skirt / Etro bangle / A Wear dress / Modcloth flats
On Wednesday's post, I talked about my love for colour blocking and how it has stuck around in spite of the changing seasons. While it's fun to do it with separates, I have a weakness for those fool proof pieces that do the tricky part for you- that is, items with multiple hues that come already crisply segmented. Although it's nothing new, here are a few lovely pieces of that nature that I came across recently. Just looking at them puts me in a happier mood; I hope it does the same for you. Happy Friday!
p.s. I'm excited to be giving away a little colour blocked something on Monday as well, so be sure to check back to enter!

Prints & Pigments

by Jen on Wednesday, June 20, 2012

{photos by Alicia}
Over the past few years, I have slowly but surely progressed in the process of defining my style. While many trends have come and gone, there are several which I've remained quite fond of; pattern mixing, colour blocking, and leopard in particular seem to have stolen my heart. Though I'm typically not a fan of too many trends being incorporated into one look, throwing all of these favourites into an outfit the other day just seemed like a fun thing to do - especially since I was feeling quite "blah" with my closet. Sure enough, it gave me some added wardrobe inspiration and definitely added a burst of happiness into my day!

Wearing: J.Crew Factory cardigan, Topshop blouse, Aritzia pants, Zara shoes, vintage belt turned necklace, Cynthia Rybakoff bracelet, DKNY bag, House of Harlow 1960 sunnies, Jacob 'Pop Allure' nails (c/o), Revlon 'Fuchsia' lips
p.s. I just wanted to say "thank you" to Elissa, who let me know that she had trouble pinning images from my blog. I'm in the process of fixing everything, but you can now pin the photos from this post. Thanks for your patience!

Tuesday Treats - Instagram Edition

by Jen on Tuesday, June 19, 2012

1. bcbg sandals i pulled for a shoot that i wish i could have kept! 2. a homemade latte & freshly baked cookies on a soggy saturday 3. an ootd 4. beautiful shorts at new local must see boutique, secret location 5. a healthy breakfast 6. favourite nail colour as of late 7. brunching with my bestie 8. dainty bracelet love (left, right) 9. my first bangles from alex & ani
I think I'm speaking for a lot of people when I say that instagram has been my most loved way to share online lately. For snapshots of outfits that may not make it to the blog, favourite new discoveries and, of course, photos of drool-worthy meals - follow me at herwaisechoice (you'll need the app). Also, please leave me your instagram name in the comments below if you're on it - I'd love to check yours out!
Happy Tuesday!

Touches of Silver

by Jen on Monday, June 18, 2012

{photos by Alicia}
I've had this Jacob dress for a while now, but had experienced a bit of trouble accessorizing it in a way that felt fresh to me. While I love gold jewelry, pairing it with the tawny hue seemed slightly predictable and a little played out (at least on my part!). Coming across a clearance priced necklace the other day was what finally inspired an outfit: the white and silver felt clean and crisp, and I knew they would make for perfect summertime accents. It also gave me a reason to also wear these flats again to create an unabashedly coordinated look.

Wearing: Jacob Dress (c/o), YesStyle jacket (last seen here), Stuart Weitzman flats (last seen here), Coach bag (old, c/o), necklace from The Bay, Joe Fresh earrings (similar)

Pattern Clashing

by Jen on Wednesday, June 13, 2012

{photos by Alicia}
While I love to wear and mix patterns, I'm usually quite calculative in the way I style them. I go by a few rules and stick with safer options to avoid a potentially overwhelming outfit. Perhaps I was feeling adventurous (or maybe it was the ridiculously cold weather we've been having lately), but I decided to throw on my houndstooth jacket on top of this ikat cardigan last minute, while heading out the door yesterday. I still haven't decided whether or not I completely like the result, but it was a good reminder to just abandon the 'rules' sometimes and have fun with fashion.

I'm not usually a bangle girl as they usually slide right off my wrists, but the expandable wires on these fun Alex and Ani pieces make them so easy to wear. See a more detailed shot of them here!
Wearing: J.Crew Factory cardigan, thrifted blouse, Club Monaco skirt (on sale for $40 in a sz 10!), UniQUEEN jacket (c/o), DKNY bag, Zara shoes, Alex and Ani bangles (c/o)

Tuesday Treats

by Jen on Tuesday, June 12, 2012

{current shoe love - pointy toed flats}
When I came back home from New York last week, I was bored. Everything in Vancouver seemed so slow & inefficient in comparison. I liked being able to eat street food at any hour, walk quickly from place to place, and I was especially drawn to the promise of endless exploration that could be done in the city. I won't deny that I still feel the yearning to move somewhere a little more fast paced while I'm young. However, here are a few of the little things I've enjoyed and have been thankful for since returning home: great food of our own, opportunity, amazing views-- and of course even the extremely trivial things, like having access to my entire shoe collection ;)

{my first chicken & waffle experience at Chewies, which certainly did not disappoint!}

{the beautiful city I call home}

{our lovely model at a shoot I recently styled, goofing off when we realized her face was too delicate for these massive sunnies! more on this soon.}

{a very strong contender for my favourite dessert in town - green tea opera cake from Miku and Minami restaurants}
Happy Tuesday!

Goodnight, Manhattan

by Jen on Monday, June 11, 2012

On our last night in New York, we had the privilege of watching the sun go down over busy Manhattan. Armed with a box of Laduree macarons, we headed up to the rooftop patio and spent 10 glorious minutes taking in the beautiful view. Living in Vancouver has allowed me to see many gorgeous sunsets from the beach, but trying to catch glimpses of disappearing sun through countless skyscrapers was, in my opinion, just as special of an experience. The sun finished setting before we knew it, but the fact that it didn't last long made it that much sweeter - much like our trip itself.

Thanks for reading along about my New York adventures last week. I hope you enjoyed it!
Wearing: J.Crew sweater (similar for a steal & a luxurious cashmere version), rag & bone shorts, BCBGMAXAZRIA cuff, C Wonder belt