July 25, 2014

Friday Favorite | Pink Lemonade

Who says you can only make pink lemonade from a can of frozen juice?
This is my go-to recipe for a delicious pink treat! It's refreshing and super easy to make. I love that you know all the ingredients you put in it!
This is a Brunette Shake approved recipe by Martha Stewart
1 cup granulated sugar
2 1/2 cups fresh lemon juice, plus 4 lemons, thinly sliced, for garnish
1 1/2 cups superfine sugar
2 cups cranberry juice
  1. Step 1
    Bring granulated sugar and 1 cup water to a boil in a medium pan over high heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.
  2. Step 2
    Add lemon juice, superfine sugar, cranberry juice, and 1 1/2 quarts water to a serving container. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until ready to serve, up to 1 day.
  3. Step 3
    To serve, add ice cubes to fill and garnish with lemon slices.

July 23, 2014

Fashion 101 | Investment Pieces

Investment pieces can range from that studded Burberry trench coat, those glitter Miu Miu booties EVERYONE had to have a couple years ago, the quilted Chanel bag... The list goes on.

But which pieces do you splurge for? Can you resell them? Which ones do you keep?

Personally, I am described by the line in "Fashion Killa" by A$AP Rocky:

"And Versace: got a lot, but she may never wear it
But she save it so our babies will be flyer than their parents"

I save all my investment and iconic fashion pieces for my hopes that when I have a daughter, she will raid my closet and I can pass down those pieces so she can live life in them like I have!

Iconic fashion pieces are always good to splurge on, if you are financially able and if you are building a fashion collection.

I limit myself to 1 fashion investment per season, and 3 trend pieces per season. The trend pieces I purchase are budget friendly, and I usually purchase them from H&M, Free People or French Connection.

eBay is a great place to buy pieces from Fashion Collaborations from years past that you can no longer find. So of course, think of this when you are purchasing items. Will people be looking for these Missoni for Target dresses in a year? Should I buy it?

Always go for those special, one of a kind pieces when you are shopping. You are unlikely to find these again, and they can go for a pretty penny on eBay or fashion reseller sites.

It is known that accessories and shoes re-sell for a higher price over time and keep their value.

Keep all the packaging, take care of your investment pieces if you are a reseller. If you are 100% sure that you are keeping your investment piece, keep it out and show it off! You deserve it.

A couple of my Investment Pieces are:

Chanel Quilted Jacket from my Nanny
Studded Christian Louboutin Booties
Manolo Blahnik Hangisi in Blue
Prada Baroque Sunglasses in Black

July 18, 2014

Confessions of a Shopaholic : Volume 1

I have always loved fashion. Beautiful dresses. Strange hats. Vintage pieces... I find beauty in everything. It's almost become a flaw of mine.
I love to shop. That is no surprise. As a fashion journalist, I like to see the trends and rate them and experiment. However, I am not personally into the trends. I would rather buy one or two "trendy" pieces per season while saving for investment pieces like a 400$ surf blue Michael Kors Sophie bag, or a 895$ floral Red Valentino dress. 
I have always wanted to be able to share my investment pieces with my future daughter. Have her try on my Prada heels, wear my Chanel sunnies...
My fashion room was a delight. I could walk in and see everything that I loved on display in a beautiful way.
I used to love the sales. SALES! Sigh. My heart beat increases just thinking about it.
It shocked me how many "sale" items that I absolutely "needed" at the time of purchase that still have the tags on them. Purses, shoes, pants... everytime I purchase something just because it was a really good deal, I almost never end up wearing it.
My passion is fashion and styling. It's either your born with style or you're not. Luckily, I have been around to help many lost souls find a great looking outfit.
Having a closet/room full of shoes and dresses is a great thing. But the cost adds up, I had to change my spending habits and how I picked up pieces. I will never pretend to be something I'm not. My style hasn't changed for a long time. I wear a lot of gold, studs, pink, dresses, minimal accessories... My style has been described as edgy, feminine, boho, classic... All of these mixed into an outfit.
Shopaholic is me. Yes yes yes. I have finally admitted it to myself.
No shoes are worth maxing out your credit card if you're never going to wear them. Remember that!
This is only Volume 1 of the Shopaholic series. So next time, I will show you some tips/tricks that I have used to save money and stop spending!


July 17, 2014

Beauty Tip/Trick : Nail Polish Stains

Tis the season for showing off that perfect pedicure, and having a bright and colourful manicure!
Of course, I have had this problem and probably every other woman on this planet has too.
What to do when your constant nail polish wearing causes stains on your nails?!
A super easy DIY cure below:
-1 tablespoon baking soda
-1/2 teaspoon olive oil
-A few squeezes of lemon juice
Measurements are approximate—combine the wet/dry until you’re happy with the consistency.
Combine the ingredients in a small bowl or cup (warning: the lemon and baking soda will have a small volcano-like reaction, but it’ll settle down quickly! I had a minor heart attack. Try to avoid this haha.). Rub the mixture onto your nails (try using a soft toothbrush on your nails). Let the mixture sit for a few minutes and simply wash off with warm water.
How does it work, you ask?
Baking soda acts as an exfoliant while the lemon juice is a natural acidic lightener. Remember the days of putting lemon on your hair to lighten it in the summer? Same idea. Olive oil is a foolproof beauty cure-all and will bring much-needed moisture back into your nails and cuticles.
Let's get started on your next colorful manicure. Bright orange polish, anyone?

July 8, 2014

The Blonde Diaries | Urban Decay Pulp Fiction

As my first post as guest editor on The Brunette Shake, I'm cutting straight to the point and sharing the beautiful news of the limited edition Pulp Fiction inspired Urban Decay collection. 

But I also introduce to you, the start of a new adventure with The Blonde Diaries. A little bit more edgy and down to root of plain ol Alicia Fearon. 

I'm a shopaholic but not just a shopaholic an excessive one at that! Why buy just one when you can buy three is what I always say!

So enjoy the first post of many to come!

Urban Decay has just released that, for the 20th anniversary of the cult classic film Pulp Fiction, they will be launching a limited edition collection inspired by the bad ass leading lady "Mia Wallace". If you have seen the movie, actress Uma Thurman plays the brazen Mia Wallace with those seductive red lips and matching nails and wicked dancing skills. Get prepared because on July 16th your local beauty retailer will have this fabulous line. While supplies last of course.

Not only does the line consist of the classic blood red lipstick, nail lacquer, and lip pencil. It also has a 5 shade eyeshadow palette in brown tones , and a Heavy Metal glitter eyeliner in "Gunmetal".

Definitely a thumbs up to UD on the Quentin Tarantino based collection, fingers crossed for more in the near future ! :)

Laugh the Loudest

 I love it when people laugh and their entire face lights up, a huge smile appears and the mood completely changes in the room.
In a World that is so negative and sad, there is also beauty and laughter. Never forget that! Frowning causes wrinkles.
What are a few things that make you laugh? Or that make you completely happy inside?
Happiness comes from the inside out.
Today, do a few things to make yourself,or others, smile. You could be the only smile they see all day, remember that! Kindness does still exist, so let's not let anyone forget that.
Here are some suggestions:
  • Eat some cotton candy
  • Pay it forward
  • Hit someone with an unsuspecting water balloon (in a nice, silly way)
  • Compliment a stranger on their outfit or their hair
  • Donate some of your old clothes to chairty
  • Volunteer
  • Write a love letter, or a letter "just because"

July 7, 2014


Instagram is a great place to network and let people know what's going on it your life.
Besides the endless amount of selfies, you can find words of wisdom plus fashion/beauty tips!
On The Brunette Shake you can find it all.
Make sure to follow The Brunette Shake and my personal Instagram, Hillary Gail Stewart, for daily posts.
Instagram is just one more outlet for us to connect and create a community where we can discuss womanly things, fashion, beauty and lifestyle. It's a positive place where we can connect, share and chat!
Join me!

Real Life Sex and The City Apartment

The set designer for Sex and the City,  Ondine Karady, has filled her one bedroom apartment with vintage/flea market finds plus some wonderful pieces directly from the set of Sex and the City.
Can you say LUCKY?
I would love to come home to a Carrie-esque vibe in my apartment.
As it is I just recently finished my own fashion room, and I love it! It is white with gold details. With a shoe wall and everything fashion. I am very pleased with my design! I had a lot of help with the building, and I am definitely grateful for it.
Back to the magical Carrie apartment...
Emerald-green Emilio Pucci-printed drapes in the living room first adorned the windows of Carrie's apartment.

The painting above Karady's bed once hung in one of the art galleries Charlotte managed.

An art deco desk in the entry first made its debut in Mr. Big's modern apartment.

via: Elle Decor

May 6, 2014

Experience | Kimberly The Studio

I was blessed with a referral to a wonderful place close to home that will satisfy all my beauty and health needs. I met Kimberly, a goddess really, who owns Kimberly The Studio in Moncton, NB Canada.
I was,at first, quite nervous; because I have never (I mean never) had my eyebrows waxed. I have always had them plucked or threaded. The most wonderful thing about Kimberly, is that she used the Egyptian Sugar method for hair removal. It didn't hurt at all! She actually had me taste the sugar, it is so natural that you can EAT it. It wasn't as good as blue cotton candy, but I can't complain!
I brought in a photo of the eyebrow shape that I liked, and Kimberly told me it was the exact shape I needed for my facial structure and cheekbones. I already notice a huge difference in my eyes actually. The updated shape makes the attention go right to my eyes, just how I like it.
Here's something that not a lot of women are comfortable talking about : Upper Lip Hair. Yikes. I know, I know. Everyone has it. I have blond peachfuzz that enjoys glowing in the daylight. I became extremely self-conscious about it, I felt like everyone could see it and was looking at it when I was in the sun. I tried bleaching it, but it only made the hair stand out more. I asked Kimberly to take care of that hairy issue with the Egyptian Sugar like how she tackled my brows. My self confidence is higher than ever. That one little flaw that I hated so much is now taken care of!
While I was there, Kimberly was nice enough to point out a major flaw in my skin condition and how I can go about solving it. I have major dry skin/hydration issues while battling some inner demons the past few months. The heating system at my day job (insurance office representative), mixed with the heat at my new home has also not made things quite easy on my skin. I am used to having flawless, hydrated skin. Right now, I got that supreme dryness going on. Even after my appointment, Kimberly has been giving me tips via email!
She offers great services, and the atmosphere is so lovely and calm. There is beautiful art on every wall, and it is a completely unique experience.  
I have already told Kimberly that I will be going to see her for a Make-Up Lesson in the very near future! Not to mention going to her every couple of weeks to get my brows/upper lip taken care of. She is also known as the Brazilian queen! So I might have to do that as well. I have always been strictly a shaving of my lady parts girl, but the Egyptian Sugar is perfect for my skin! I had no reaction, so I'll have to try this out.
Definitely 5 star experience at Kimberly The Studio!
Check out her site : Kimberly The Studio

May 2, 2014

Miley Cyrus | Tongue Tied

@mileycyrus released this amazingly beautiful, yet trippy, video called "Tongue Tied" in collaboration with filmmaker and artist Quentin Jones. It's a crazy, raunchy, slightly bondage-style shoot which subverts "popular symbols of sex." To Miley, as to a little kid, even the most dangerous object is a toy. And like a kid’s, her near-nudity is hardly erotic. She’s just happier naked. Her poses are jokes, even that infamous tongue—stuck out—remains firmly in cheek. She holds up the cardboard cut-out and winks. Get it? She’s playing with herself.

Notice the duct tape? Used to cover up just enough... Great use of styling in this video. I can't get enough!! 

April 29, 2014

SPOTTED | The New Potato : Camilla Belle

From start to finish, what would be your ideal food day?
I can’t possibly fit everything into one day! If I had to choose the biggest cheat day…I would start with a cappuccino and Kouign-amann from Bouchon. Lunch would most likely consist of the grilled vegetable salad with shrimp, all the bread at the table, and an Arnold Palmer from The Ivy. An afternoon tea snack is crucial, so I might pick up one chocolate chip cookie from Clementines and a lemon cupcake from Georgetown Cupcakes to share with a friend while drinking tea from Mariage Freres in Paris that I have stocked at home. Dinner would definitely be Italian…either homemade lasagna or a pasta selection from Sotto Sotto in Toronto, followed by their tiramisu for dessert.
How do you always start your day? What’s your go-to breakfast?
During the week I’ll start my day early by going to exercise. Before I go to a class, I have half of a ThinkThin or Larabar during the drive over. When I get home I’ll alternate between making a scramble with veggies, yogurt with berries and granola, an acai bowl, or Irish oatmeal.
What are your morning and nightly beauty routines?
I keep my beauty routine very simple. In the morning, I always apply moisturizer, and if I’m heading out I’ll apply a tinted moisturizer. At night, I wash my face no matter how late or tired I am, and will then apply moisturizer and a lip balm.
A beauty mainstay that hasn’t changed since you were a teenager…
Mascara. Even if I am not going to wear makeup, I will curl my lashes and put on a tiny amount of mascara.
Go-to snacks on set…
Raw nuts, apples with peanut butter, popcorn, and chocolate.
Survival snacks at events…
Haribo gummies are a must.
What’s always in your bag?
Burt’s Bees chapstick, Kiehl’s lip balm, mints, Orbitz gum, my camera, Ice Breaker Duos, and hand sanitizer by EO.
How do you practice beauty from the inside out?
The women in my family have always been conscious about practicing a healthy lifestyle. I was taught at an early age that whatever I consumed would be reflected on the outside, especially on my skin. I’ve never smoked, hardly drink alcohol, am strict about my sleeping habits, and eat tons of vegetables and fruits daily.
Do you have a workout regime? What is it?
Most weekdays I’ll wake up early to exercise, because if I don’t get that done in the morning, I most likely won’t get to it later in the day. I get bored quite easily when it comes to workout regimes, so I always alternate. I’ve danced my whole life, so I try and keep that up. I also practice yoga, pilates, SoulCycle, TRX, S Factor, and Cardio Barre.
If you could switch closets with one person in the world, who would it be?
Ava Gardner – so sexy and feminine.
What’s your go-to drink at the end of the day?
Fresh mint tea.
Do you love to cook? What are some of your go-to recipes?
I can’t even remember a time in my life when I wasn’t in the kitchen cooking. I started out as my Mom’s sous chef, and gradually became quite the cook myself. I have a massive collection of cookbooks, but sometimes I prefer to just look at what I have in the kitchen and figure it out. Depending on the time of day and the weather, I’ll whip up a pasta, or grill a steak and veggies on the barbecue, or even make a stir fry with brown rice and tons of veggies, accompanied by a broiled filet of salmon.
Your idea of the perfect smoothie…
One that I make at home all the time contains acai, mixed berries, banana, apple, spinach, kale, protein powder, chia seeds, flax seeds, dates, and flax milk. It’s delicious and gives me tons of energy for the day.
Do you like to entertain? What are your entertaining go-tos?
I’ve always loved to entertain and was raised in a Brazilian household where entertaining is part of the culture. The right group of people can always make or break an evening, so I try and invite people who I hope will get along! I’m a big fan of potluck dinners, since I used to do that all the time with my girlfriends from high school growing up. It becomes quite an interactive experience because you create the menu together, get to try each other’s creations, and learn from each other. Depending on the occasion, I’ll be in charge of desserts, appetizers, or the main course.
What are your favorite cities for food? Where do you go in each?
Since I grew up in Los Angeles, I have many neighborhood joints I go to on a regular basis, but when I want to go out for a nicer meal, there are a handful of restaurants that never let me down. From all of Suzanne Goin’s locations – Tavern, Lucques, A.O.C., and The Larder – to Jon Shook’s – Animal and Son of a Gun – to Osteria Mozza, Gjelina, and E baldi, I have never been disappointed. A few newer discoveries I have been enjoying are Bucato for a chic Italian night out, Fonuts for scrumptious donuts, and even though Huckleberry has been around for a while, I recently tried the scones and can’t get enough of them.
My other favorite city for food, that I’ve grown up traveling to, is Sao Paulo. I usually will always visit (to name a few), Figueira Rubaiyat for churrasco, Camelo Pizzaria for Brazilian pizza, Maria Brigadeiro for brigadieros, Jardim de Napoli for classic Italian, and Bacio di Latte for gelato.
What’s your ‘new potato’ right now?
Coffee beans from Gimme! Coffee. I discovered the brand while I was filming in Buffalo, New York, and think it is absolutely delicious.
What are five things your loving right now?
Tom Odell’s album, my bright purple New Balance sneakers, Giada de Laurentiis’ new cookbook, banana pancakes from Swingers, and William Shakespeare’s Henry V.
If you could host a dinner party with any five people living or dead, who would be there? What would you cook?
William Shakespeare, Ann Curry, Yul Brynner, Carmen Miranda, and Zach Galifianakis. What a mixed bag! There would be singing, political debates, funny deadpan jokes, and maybe a bit of role playing! I would most likely cook a simple meal that could be served family style so that we could stay at the table and have more time for chatting. One of my favorite dinners is a hearty pasta, with green vegetables like broccolini and a simple salad as sides. I would definitely make two desserts…possibly a chocolate tart with raspberries, and an apple, pear, cherry crumble with homemade vanilla ice cream.
*Camilla Belle, photographed at Lucques in Los Angeles by Danielle Kosann

April 23, 2014

GlamST Launch

ATTENTION: Make-up queens and beauty gurus
GlamST is the super amazing platform where women can go and try on different make-up looks virutally, and without leaving the comfort of their own home!
Sometimes, women can find it embarrasing or hard to try on different looks at the make-up counter. Often, you don't want to spend money on make-up without trying it on! Imagine buying that 50$ lipstick and having it look awful on you once you get it home... dreadful, I know. GlamST has helped women out everywhere by launching this amazing site!
Head on over to GlamST and try on some looks. Did I mention that it's FREE to use?
You can try on new products from hot and trendy brands, there are make-up and beauty tips and tricks and so much more.
They have a "go girl!" philosophy which means that their goal is to make each and every woman feel beautiful. They help you find your best beauty looks!
The site is easy to use, and has many options. It's basically what me, you and every other woman has been waiting for!

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April 22, 2014

Earth Day

It's Earth Day.
To me, Earth day is every day!
There's small steps you can take to help make a positive impact on the environment. Can you just take a moment and imagine what difference you could make if you stopped using plastic, disposable water bottles? If you cut out meat from your diet? If you buy local?
Vegetarian's make a large, positive impact on the Earth. They have a smaller carbon footprint. However, I feel that if you continue to eat meat (which is completely fine! I'm definately not a full-time vegetarian) you should buy from local farms. The transportation of meat is a huge carbon footprint on our lovely planet Earth.
Want a few tips to help the planet? Remember Green is Sexy!
  • Use reusable water bottles
  • Use reusable grocery bags
  • Buy local!
  • Take shorter showers (or shower with a friend!)
  • Walk to work
  • Take public transportation
  • Reduce, reuse, recycle
  • Turn off your computer at night
  • Change your lightbulbs! Use the energy efficient bulbs
  • Use soy candles, not petroleum
  • Hang your clothes out to dry instead of using a dryer
  • Turn off the tap while you brush your teeth
  • Support naturally made products, like products from Lush cosmetics
  • Turn off the lights
  • Choose matches over lighters
Looking to help? Check out these sites and make a difference!