| New Things I’m About |

You’ve made it past Wednesday, it’s a easy slide into the weekend now. Why not make it a little easier by taking some time out to watch my latest video over on Youtube? It’s a very relaxed chat where I go through some of the new products I’ve picked up. Check it out here – NEW VIDEO!

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much love,

freckled.rambles xx

 

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| Ask Italian |

How good is food? I know you’re all nodding along here thinking of some tasty arse food you’ve had. Being vegan shouldn’t affect your access to tasty food, however unfortunately sometimes it does. While restaurants & cafe’s get used to adding more vegan friendly options to their menus it is helpful to know where we can go to get an affordable but delicious meal.

Queue Ask Italian, falling into your ‘high street’ restaurant bracket of urban eateries I was pleasantly surprised. The entire vegan menu is pictured below & I’m not sure about you but I really enjoyed that they had a kids vegan menu for all the little stars changing the world.

It is not a huge menu but they had pasta & pizza (lets be fair I came for the pizza) so I was happy!

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I had the design your own pizza option & went with the aubergine, mushrooms, olives & onions … I know more then three options … I’m a rebel. The pizza was amazing, honestly. A lovely thin, crispy base with a flavourful tomato base, the vegan mozzarella was also grand, perfectly melty (it’s a real adjective) without being heavy or ‘fake’ tasting. I don’t think you can go wrong with my topping options & I was really impressed with the options available as I feel you can make a very sophisticated flavour profile from the ingredients at hand.

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Did you know that alcohol, particularly wine & beer can be NOT VEGAN … is nothing sacred? If you were not aware I will give you a moment to mourn the lose of an easy liquor store choice.

The attempt to find a vegan wine whilst out has proved to be the most difficult part of my ‘eating out’ transition, not at all aided by ignorant people telling me things like … ‘most wine is vegan but sometimes it has animal by products in it’ … sorry to burst your bubble random bar tender that is not vegan then is it. Any how rant over, Ask Italian takes all of the hard work out of choosing a beverage with an entirely vegan beverage menu!!!

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I went with the Sangiovese IGT, it was easy to drink & went really well with my pizza creation.

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I am a firm believer that dessert is the most important part of pretty much every meal, so you can image my delight at seeing two fantastic dessert options on the Ask menu. Naturally I went with the chocolate option, the vegan blood orange & chocolate tart … can I tell you it was as good as it sounds.

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Thanks for reading, have you been to Ask Italian or do you have a favourite high street restaurant I should try before heading back to Canada?

much love,

freckled.rambles xx

| a fall makeup tutorial |

Hello family!

I filmed a little tutorial which is very fall inspired & I used a tone of affordable products. You should definitely click this link & go check it out!

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It would also be fabulous if you could subscribe to my youtube channel as well .. I’d love to get to 100 subscribers!

much love,

freckled.rambles

| My Favourite Places to Eat Vegan in Toronto |

Sitting in front of my computer this morning I’ve been thinking about what I should write today, something makeup related .. no, something about skincare .. no, & then I found myself reminiscing on the delicious vegan treats & meals which I enjoyed early last month in Toronto.

BOOM, let’s talk vegan eats in Toronto.

A quick disclaimer, I have yet to eat at all of the available vegan restaurants, cafes, take aways & hole in the wall venues across the fabulous city, however, over the three days of exploring before Josh & I flew back to the UK, we found some great vegan joints. I also REALLY suck at remembering to take photos of my food before I’ve devoured 3/4 of it so I’m going to insert photos from the various venue’s websites as well as the minimal photos I took .. I’ll get better at this, promise.

First up we have Bloomer’s, located at 873 Bloor St W. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bloomersto/

I’ll be honest the one & only reason we went to Bloomer’s was for doughnuts. My life is somewhat dictated by a strong obsession for doughnuts & upon making the switch to veganism I was confident there were fabulous vegan doughnuts out there. Oh man was I right. After deliberating for what felt like hours over flavours like Pumpkin Pie & Birthday Cake I ended up with three doughnuts (yep that’s right, three) …

  • French Toast & Bacon
  • Rose Water & Pistachio
  • Elderflower

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Needless to say I fell into doughnut heaven & was despondent leaving the store knowing I was going to be out of the country and away from the doughnutopia for over a month. When I’m back in Toronto at the end of October I am going to be bulk buying these guys!

Second on this list of delicious, must visit places we have Fresh, which is a little chain of vegan restaurants throughout the city with restaurants on Spadina, Bloor, Crawford & Eglinton. Website: https://freshrestaurants.ca/

We visited the Eglinton store & I was legitimately in vegan heaven … it’s probably time for a little story now: I became vegan at the end of July this year & spent all of my time working at a summer camp which meant that 90% of the food I ate came from the camp kitchen & I didn’t get a chance to experience vegan specific restaurants. The menu at Fresh is bursting with options, but in classic Sarah style I got a burger, the Chipotle Bacon burger to be exact. It was extremely filling, super nutritious-feeling (you know when something just feels healthy) & totally delicious. Like I said earlier I suck at remembering to take photos of food when I’m hungry so here’s a snap I found on the gram – (check out the original here)

 

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Lastly, for a quick lunch during our final day we stopped by the Urban Herbivore (a name a quietly love), located 220 Yonge Street.                  Website: https://www.herbivore.to

I feel like a lot of people assume that being vegan means crappy salads when you don’t have time for a sit down meal. Urban Herbivore definitely debunks that idea, I had an amazing ‘build your own’ bowl full of coconut bacon, sweet potato, cauliflower as well as a tone of other tasty ingredients. It was the biggest ‘salad’ I’ve ever hard & I was practically exploding after eating the whole thing which is an important feature in a meal for me. Again I did not take a photo so thank you to Urban Herbivore for having a fire Instagram & here is a snap from their page – (check the original here).

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There you have it fam, three of my must visit, totally loved vegan places in Toronto. If you’ve been to any of these or if you have a favourite place in Toronto that I need to visit when I’m back at the end of the month lets chat in the comments!

much love,

freckled.rambles 

| Life Update – New Direction |

She’s alive!!!

I know you don’t have to tell me I’ve been gone forever … sadly I am not a tech savvy as I thought & a little glitch in WordPress as well as, well life has kept me from writing all kinds of things for you lovely people.

On that lets dive head first into a little old life update. Kicking it off I should let you all know that I am back in the UK for the next month & a bit so if you have any super cool things this not so cool girl should check out please let me know (predominately food related please .. I really like food). Guess it’s the right time to tell you all also that after an embarrassingly long time I have seen the light & joined the vegan train, thats right no more bloating & grossness for this girl. I will 100% be making another post in the very near future which will go into more details about making the change to veganism so if that’s something which interests you please subscribe so you’ll get fun emails telling you when I’ve posted.

A new direction is in order, I’ve been feeling stale & flat in relation to my writing, looks, ideas & blog theme so here we go a I’m going to lay down my ideas for you. Be kind but be honest:

  • a stronger focus on style  – clothing, shoes, accessories
  • more reviews & impressions on vegan/cruelty-free makeup products
  • skincare routines & products
  • A+ vegan treats, restaurants & recipes

I hope that you are all as excited as I am for the upcoming changes!

much love,

freckled.rambles

| Northlore Skincare |

Happy Thursday loves,

I hope February is treating you well, whether you’re rugged up for the cold winter in the north or bikini clad frolicking in the sun in the south.

I’ve never been a huge skincare lover, in that it doesn’t really excite me all too much;

  1.  I’m super lazy so the thought of spending anymore time working on my face before getting into bed is ghastly.
  2. I’d much prefer to be spending my money on new makeup not skincare

However, since finding Northlore my whole skincare outlook has changed. Firstly, I’ll fill you in on the company details of Northlore, it is a itty bitty little company from Saskatoon, Canada owned by Natassia Brazeau. The ‘our story’ page on their website really covers everything I could say;

“Northlore specializes in small batch, plant-based body care, prepared with plants grow in our community of biodynamic gardens, and wildcrafted from the northern forests and grasslands near our home on the Canadian Prairies. We use folk methods of extraction to offer you the optimum plant potency in skincare, steam distilling plants in our copper still, and lunar infusing them into oils. Northlore’s formulas are inspired by plant lore and the wisdom of folk recipes. We access bioactive properties within local flowers, leaves, roots, clays, honey, and salt to heal and nourish your body. Crafted in sync with the cycle of the seasons and imbued with the mystical energies of the moon, our all-natural products are earth-based, meant to inspire you in rituals of self-care. We place the utmost value on the earth, the safety of your body, and our primordial connection to the plants that sustain us all.”

I picked up two skincare products from the Northlore line at a boutique shop in Fernie, BC & have been so overwhelmed with the quality, results & scents of the products. If you’ve been around for a while you’ll know that it is very important to me that I am using cruelty free products in all aspects of my skincare/makeup/hygiene routine so when I found these products, which are natural & cruelty free I was jumping for joy!

The first item I bought was the Rosehip Seed Facial Serum, this stuff is AMAZING. I have wanted to try a serum/oil for my daily moisturiser for a while now but could never find the right product & I have most definitely found it in this serum. Meant for combination skin I have not experienced any of the excess oil build up I was concerned about with trying an oil to moisturise.

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After falling in love with the above serum I knew I needed to try out more of these products so I picked up the Yarrow & Lavender Cleansing Grains. Talk about a sensory overload, the scent of these grains is fantastic, my bathroom always smells so good after cleaning my face with these & I love the fact that these grains start out as a textured powder & once you add water to the mixture you’re left with a paste of whatever consistency you’d like (you can use it as a face mask, thick scrub or light cleanser) & lets be honest who doesn’t love a multi use product. I’ve found this cleanser really cleans out my pores without feeling like it is striping my skin of the naturals oils. All in all it is fantastic!

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I’ve given you a brief overview of these products, but I would definitely recommend heading over to http://www.northloregoods.com/ & having a bit more of a read of the products available & if you do decide to give any of them ago please let me know what you think!

bye for now,

freckled.rambles

xx.

| Empties – were they worth it? |

Um, excuse me when did we reach the end of January? Can I please go back to being 10& feeling like the year toooooook soooooooo loooonggggggg.

Welcome back to Freckled.Rambles loves – thanks for swinging by. I know I’ve been totally shit at blogging on a regular basis & I’m going to change that! Today’s post is something I haven’t done before & I’m not sure why considering I find these kinds of posts really interesting when other people do them.

Today we’re looking at products that I have finished up (& remembered to keep the packaging) . We’ll run through whether or not I will be repurchasing, what I thought of the product & the most important thing, would I recommend them to you.

Let’s dive straight in with the makeup products I’ve used up in the last couple weeks.

  • Too Faced Born This Way Foundation in Porcelain
    • If you’ve followed me for a while you will know I LOVE this foundation it has been my ride or die since it was released. This is the second bottle I’ve gone through & I will 110% be buying it again. It has a medium to full coverage & is definitely build-able, whilst leaving your skin looking totally natural. All I have to say is if you haven’t got this foundation in your life get on it!

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  • NYX Cosmetics Matte Finish Setting Spray
    • I actually ordered a new one of these yesterday because it one of the most fantastic setting sprays I have ever tried & for $10 you cannot go wrong. If you love a matte finish without looking dry & want your makeup to stay put all day/night long this is for you. NYX is one of my all time loved brands & I am tempted to also pick up this setting spray in the dewy finish because it’s just so good!

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  • NYX Cosmetics Auto Eyebrow Pencil in Brown & Auburn
    • Like I’ve already mentioned I love NYX products, however I am kind of on the fence with these brow pencils. To start with, I have red / auburn hair so when I saw that instead of having to make a brown pencil work for me their was a pencil at an affordable price for my brows I was pumped – unfortunately instead of being a lovely red / auburn the pencil was bordering on fluorescent orange  – not the look I was going for. It is safe to say I will not be re-purchasing the Auburn pencil. As for the Brown shade there are some pros & cons, the colour was great & I loved the way it worked with my hair & the rest of my makeup, however I found the pencil slightly chunky & WHY ON EARTH WOULD YOU NOT HAVE A PROPER SPOILE ON THE END NYX????? The little brow brush on the end of the pencil legitimately did nothing to tame my unruly brows. So I’m on the fence with this one – if you’re ok with using another brush to get your brows into shape & don’t mind a bigger pencil this could be fantastic for you. As for me I’m currently on the powder brow train & don’t plan on getting off it for a while.

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I also have two skincare products which I have finished up over the last month.

  • Soap & Glory Total Drama Clean 5 in 1 Micellar Cleansing Water
    • I bought this product when I was back in the UK in October & thought it was the bees knees – totally fell in love. I’ve finished the entire bottle now & I have kind of fallen out of love with it (I need to quickly say this could be entirely my own fault because I’m beyond lazy when it comes to skincare) I found the more I used this product into the winter months my skin was feeling drier & drier. This most definitely could be a combination of the moisturiser I was using & the fact that it has been a delightful -25 degrees over the last few months here in Canada. I have also recently re-vamped my skincare routine – like I said I’m uber lazy & I needed something new that worked for me (keep an eye out for something coming soon about it). I might re-purchase this when I am back in the UK (it’s super hard to get in Canada at the moment) but for now I’ll say we had a good run but I’ve found a new love for taking off my makeup.

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  • Nutrimetics Comfort Calming Day Creme
    • I’ve been using Nutrimetics skincare for a couple years now thanks to my amazing mum. The products are full of great things for your skin & they have a really top range so there is definitely something for everyone. I use the comfort range because it’s nice & gentle on the skin, it’s not to heavy but is still very moisturising & feels great. This moisturiser is so fabulous & I will 100% be stocking up again when I am back in Australia, if you haven’t tried anything from Nutrimetics I recommend giving them ago – they also make some really sweet makeup!

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There you have my very first ’empties’ post, I really hope you enjoyed & got something from it. If you use or have tried any of these products let me know & let me know what you thought of them – I love to here from you!

Also if anyone is wondering my nail polish in these photos is by LA Colors in the shade Transformer.

As always these thoughts & feelings are totally my own & I have not been sponsored for the content.

Freckled.Rambles xx.