And I thought the Shu Uemura Eyelash Curler couldn't get any better!

Karl for Shu box

As a little bit of background to this particular situation, I had been using the iconic Shu Uemura eyelash curler for years and can say that it did live up to the hype.  Consistently awarded best in its class by beauty editors from magazines like Allure and InStyle, this tool is easy to use, fits all eye shapes and legitimately curls lashes rather than merely crimping or bending them.

Now imagine my disappointment when I lost it.  At $24 it wasn’t incredibly expensive, but I used curling mascaras for a while and hoped that I would eventually stumble upon it (it just wasn’t the same!).  Now take that disappointment and multiply that by 10 when I discovered that Shu Uemura stopped most of their distribution within North America—Sephora, Nordstrom, Saks… no one was carrying it!**  (I’m convinced someone took it from my makeup bag while at the gym because they knew getting a hold of one would be super tough!  Hmph!  Or maybe I just lost it…haha) 

Karl For Shu Close Up

Although the Shu Uemura curler is still at the top of InStyle’s Best Beauty Buys list, it was bumped off of Allure’s Best of Beauty List by Kevyn Aucoin’s “The Eyelash Curler” which features a red pad.  The shift from a normal pad to a bright red one makes it easier to ensure even placement along the lash roots and helps to point out any stray lashes left out when curling.

So despite being knocked out of Allure’s #1 spot, the Shu Uemura curler was my Holy Grail eyelash curler, I decided to repurchase it again.  Upon visiting the Shu Uemura website I noticed that there were selling a limited edition Karl Lagerfeld version (Karl for Shu) which came with a cute charm and…a BRIGHT RED PAD!  I couldn’t have been happier!!

Karl for Shu Eyelash Curler

A couple notes for anyone interested in buying this:

  • Reviews on Amazon indicated that a few of the sellers were actually peddling fakes, so I recommend buying from an authorized reseller
  • A comparison of the Canadian/US site shows that the Canadian site was retailing the Karl for Shu curler for $24 while the American site has it listed on sale for $18 (Do you see my frustration with shopping in Canada? Our dollar is practically at par!!)
  • You can get FREE SHIPPING if you register with Shu Uemura for emails (if you’re lazy, the code is “REGISTER1”)
  • I’m happy with the Whitefficient Clear Brightening Gentle Cleansing Oil (20ml) which I selected as my free sample because it feels really luxurious!

Karl For Shu Contents

So this baby is now all mine, and for 25% less than what I would have paid in Canada!  It works just as well as the original, but I’ve really been liking the new red pad.  There’s no more need to re-curl uneven lashes because it very obviously indicates if your curler is not perfectly aligned with your lash line.  The charm is cute but tends to get caught on things in my makeup bag (as if eyelash curlers don’t do that enough!), but if it hassles you too much you can always remove it.

The Karl for Shu eyelash curler is limited edition so if you’re looking to pick up an eyelash curler, I recommend getting this one soon!

What are some of your favorite holy grail beauty tools?  I’m always on the lookout so I’d love some recommendations! 

With love,
Veronique♥

**Between the time that I ordered it and wrote this post, Sephora seems to have started selling Shu Uemura again.  Both Sephora websites for the USA & Canada still indicate that they do not carry the brand, but I walked into a store at some point in the past couple weeks and located a Shu Uemura display.  They did not carry the limited edition Karl for Shu eyelash curler, but they did have some of the original ones in stock.   

 

 

Disclosure:  I purchased this item on my own and did not receive any compensation for this post.  These are my own opinions and are in no way indicative of the positions or opinions of the companies mentioned.  Thanks for your support! ♥

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What I'm Loving At The Moment x The Geometric Leather Necklace

Geometric Leather Necklace

Necklace from Charlotte Russe

A welcome change from the elaborate and sparkly necklaces donned in prior seasons, I’ve been loving the geometric leather bib necklace.  It’s edgy, yet still polished, and I adore the striking contrast of the buttery leather and high gloss metal.  Following this year’s minimalist trend, this chic accessory is highly versatile and transitions easily from summer to fall.

Nicole Ritchie House of Harlow

House of Harlow 1960 – 5 Station Necklace in Leather (Color: Khaki)

Like the House of Harlow necklace pictured on Nicole Richie, this accessory will up the ante for a solid colored maxi dress and its geometric shapes pair well with the tribal prints and boho nuances punctuating this summer’s music festival inspired looks.  It adds effortless glam when paired with distressed denim shorts, but will look just as fabulous at the office.  But as the weather cools, there’s something about fall that makes me instantly want to slip into leather skirts and shorts—an obvious pairing for this accessory!  Soften these pieces with a flowy chiffon top in cream or pale nude and top it all off with dramatic liquid liner for a sophisticated and put-together look.

What would you pair with this necklace?  Have you seen any other stores carrying similar ones?

With love,
Veronique♥

Disclosure: I purchased this item on my own and did not receive any compensation for this post. These are my own opinions and are in no way indicative of the positions or opinions of the companies mentioned. Thanks for your support! ♥

IKEA Billy Bookcase: 29 heels, 9 flats, 13 sandals, 4 ankle boots, 5 tall boots & 4 sneakers in 2.5 square feet of floor space!

How to use the IKEA Billy Bookcase for shoe storage!

When people say they have a “shoe problem”, it usually means they buy too many shoes. As a shoe addict in total denial, my shoe problem is how to store what I’ve accumulated so that everything is visible, easily accessible and neatly organized… all while taking up as little space as possible!

While I would loooove shelves upon shelves of neatly displayed shoes like Carrie Bradshaw’s closet in the movie Sex and the City, function and practicality are my main concern. I consider myself to be more of a shoe-addict-in-denial, rather than full blown shoe addict because when it comes down to it, shoes are not my weakness. I am more of an overall or general beauty/fashion junkie, and any space taken up by additional shoe racks only means a bigger problem storing everything else…

Shoe Storage Polaroid

I was previously using 2 extendable shoe racks stacked one on top of another. My heels and sneakers were on the shelves, half my boots were along the top shelf, the remaining boots were lined up next to the wall and I also had a bin off to the side containing my flip-flops & flat sandals.

For those of you ladies who wear high heels on a regular basis (+3 in.), I’m sure you understand my frustration with the standard shoe racks that use 2 bars in place of a shelf. While they do hold everything in place, taking heels in and out can be somewhat of a nightmare—the tall heels often hang down too low, touching and getting hooked onto the shoe that you are trying to pull out or put back. The result: a messy shoe rack with some shoes half hanging, some that tumbled down to the shelf below and a lot of shoes perpetually strewn at the base of the shelf. So maybe it’s not a complete nightmare (read: first world problem), but I knew there had to be a better solution.

Here’s how I crammed neatly organized 29 pairs of high heels, 9 pairs of flat shoes, 13 pairs of sandals, 4 pairs of ankle boots, 5 pairs of knee-high boots and 4 sneakers into 2.5ft2 of floor space…with room to grow!

(There are also 4 more pairs of random over-the-knee boots, Ugg boots and rain boots somewhere to the right, but for the sake of this post, let’s just pretend they don’t exist. I don’t think I can fit much more onto this one shelf, but if you think of a way to do it leave a comment below! I’d love to hear it!)

shoe storage overview

HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL NEED

  1. Ikea Billy Bookcase ($69.99 CDN)
  2. Ikea Billy Extra Shelves ($10.00 CDN each) – I used a total of 3 extra shelves
  3. Screwdriver + Hammer (as per the Billy Bookcase instructions)
  4. Power Drill

**If you aren’t quite as comfortable as I am with power tools, feel free to replace 3 & 4 with your dad, boyfriend, super nice guy friend or very handy girlfriend!

Billy Bookcase Materials

SOME CONSIDERATIONS:

The best part of this project is that you can change it and switch it up according to your own shoe collection. Feel free to make use of the predrilled holes and use only what comes in the Ikea box, or purchase additional shelves and take a power drill to the bookcase to make the shelf levels completely customizable.

Before you start, you should decide if you want to build something that is more of a shoe display case (i.e. something that nicer and neater but doesn’t hold as much per bookcase) or if you are looking for a more practical shoe storage solution (i.e. more shelves and more shoes per shelf). Your decision should take into consideration how extensive your shoe collection is and how much floor space you have to work with. Whatever you want to achieve will determine how best to install the shelves and organize your shoes.

TIPS:

Arrange first by style / type of shoe

This will make the most efficient use of shelf height. I determined the height of the shelves by measuring it against the tallest pair of each style. If you have more than one shelf per style, make sure that all of those shelves are the same height, and try to start new styles of shoes on different shelves so that the excess space can be used for any future purchases.

♥ Then arrange by colour

Arranging by colour is the most aesthetically appealing because it gives a greater illusion of order and organization, especially if you are tight on space. To keep things simple, I went lightest to darkest with neutrals, with some variation near the end for coloured/multicoloured shoes.

♥ Determine how best to arrange the shoes on each shelf

Shoe Shelves

  • 4 Pairs Per Shelf: Display 4 pairs of shoes per shelf facing forward.
  • 5 Pairs Per Shelf: Alternate the direction in which you face shoes to compress each pair’s width. Fitting 5 pairs per shelf will allow a little buffer between pairs so that taking something from the shelf does not disturb the shoes next to it.
  • 6 Pairs Per Shelf: (This was the option that worked best for my shoes) I alternated the direction of my shoes, but pulled the front facing shoe as far forward as possible while pushing the back facing shoe as far back as possible. This further compressed each pair’s width allowing me to fit one more pair per shelf, but removed the extra space between pairs. Removing or returning a pair does disturb the shoes next to it, but not by much and not inconveniently so.
  • 7 Pairs Per Shelf: Alternate the directions of the shoes again, but first put in all the back facing shoes at a diagonal, then put all the front facing shoes in facing forward. Although this method makes the most efficient use of shelf space, I opted not to organize my shoes this way because I found removing and returning shoes to be too inconvenient. I think that there are also too many shoes crammed onto each shelf, making it difficult to remove or return shoes quickly and neatly.
  • Flats + Sandals: If you have few pairs of flats & sandals, I recommend stacking them one on top of another with pairs side by side so that removing one pair doesn’t jostle the ones next to it (as I did with my shelf of flats). If you have many pairs of flats & sandals, I recommend laying them on their side with the toes facing opposite directions and soles facing outwards (as I did with my sandals & flip flops). This allows you to compress the space further if you purchase more shoes, and keeping the soles facing outwards prevents them from dirtying one another while also preventing the straps from getting tangled when taking them off the shelf.

Note: I recommend that you spread your shoes out as much as you can at first, then cram them in a little at a time and reorganize/compress as you buy additional pairs.

Keep a shoe mat nearby

Wipe them at the door, but it doesn’t hurt to keep one nearby to wipe shoes before putting them back onto the white shelves. Buy a nice one that matches your décor or do what I did and grab one for $1 at Ikea—it’s very plain, but it can be put away when company comes over and is easily replaced after each rainy/snowy season.

SOME ALTERNATE IDEAS:

♥ If you wear sneakers more often than I do, place one low shelf along the bottom and store sneakers below your boots rather than along the top.

♥ Arrange your shelves so the shortest ones (for flats) are at the top, and the tallest ones (for boots) are at the bottom. Although this will make things look more orderly, consider that it may be less practical to have to reach higher for flats and sandals.

♥ Hide or conceal your bookcase using the accompanying glass doors from Ikea. If you are planning to close off your bookcase, make sure to air out your shoes every once in a while.

♥ If you are creating a display case:

  • Tilt the shelves forward by placing the back pegs one peg hole higher than those in the front to give a better view of the shoe.
  • Replace all regular shelves with the frosted glass shelves from Ikea (same price, $10 each). If you do this, please note that the middle shelf is fixed and will have to remain white.
  • Consider installing lighting to illuminate your display case

Would you organize your shoes this way? What other space-saving solutions have you come up with to store your shoe collection?

With love,
Veronique♥

[Disclosure: I purchased these items on my own and did not receive any compensation for this post. These are my opinions and are in no way indicative of the positions or opinions of the companies mentioned. Thanks for your support! ♥]

What I'm Loving at the Moment x Soko – I'll Kill Her (Hannes Fischer Remix)

Who would have thought that bitter, cheated on ex-girlfriend could ever sound so chic?

I can’t seem to get enough of this song! It’s just so perfectly french and despite what it’s about, it makes you happy just listening to it.  This remix pulls off being catchy while still managing to be laid back and is one song that will definitely be on my playlist all summer!

With love,

Veronique♥