beautyBOUTIQUE & PHYTO Paris TIFF Suite 2016 - The Best Event of the Year

The annual TIFF Beauty Suite put on by exceptional  OverCat Communications is one of my favourite days of the year.  And this year's beautyBOUTIQUE by Shoppers Drug Mary & PHYTO Paris  7th Annual TIFF Suite 2016 held just last week, was no exception.

The excitement of celebs descending upon the city for 10 days of film, food and celebrations could be felt within the walls of the boutique. Many media and stars are here getting primped before heading to red carpet events. Getting ready for the spotlight is never easy, so it's important to have talented folks at your side who can guide you through the process.

This year, I had the best #GlamSquad ever:

- Sophie EvansBrand Embassador for St. Tropez 
Beauty Appointment: Custom skin finishing treatment (read: Head-to-toe spray tan)

I first met Sophie at the TIFF beauty suite two years ago where she was enlisted to spray tan a host of us Canadian gals. 

Back then, she was the first person in awhile to see me naked, save a pair of paper panties. No pressure, right? It could be intimidating to be full frontal with the woman who on the regular sprays Bey, and was soon jetting off to give Margot Robbie a deep bronzing, but Sophie who is stunning enough to grace covers herself, put me at ease both times.

I had a bit of colour on my arms, neck and ankles from summer events, but everything else was ghost white. The lovely Sophie not only evened me out, she covered me in a steady glow that darkened throughout the night, and then went on to last a full week after. She then kindly contoured my cheekbones (because I seem to have high pointy Swedish cheeks that don't do much) and then went to work on giving me abs. Bless.

The result is astonishing for many reasons:

1. I had been self tanning with St. Tropez, filling in the white spots for months, but it doesn't even come close to what Sophie achieves. I have seen a lot of spray tans and Sophie's are not just superior. They are unsurpassed. The colour is so natural (even on a pale girl like me) and even, you'd never know this was from a bottle.
2. A tan seriously slims you - no doubt about it. My legs looked long and lean. Ooh, I could get used to this.
3, The whites of my eyes and my teeth popped white like a camera flash against my dark glow. Very sexy.
4. You simply look healthier and lit from within.
5. There are a lot of things you can do to look and feel your best. This is the ultimate.

And Sophie is the ultimate. I hope you get to meet her someday soon.

- Melissa ForrestNail Artist at Tips Nail Bar & Brand Ambassador for Shoppers Drug Mart
Beauty Appointment: Ceramic Glaze Manicure

Despite supposed to being a quickie mani, Melissa did the best job of anyone to do my nails. Ever. Even that swanky expensive place downtown with champagne. Psssh, not even close.

Because I have short nails, Melissaa thought the dark purple would look chic. She was right. I am not at all skilled when it comes to painting my nails, so dark colours are never a good idea for me to attempt on my own. Plus there's the matter of my pale skin. I wondered if I shouldn't pick a more "summery" colour to show off my new tan, but no need - my glow was on fleek no matter what shade I donned.

Melissa is pretty, smart and funny so just a few minutes into our visit, it felt like I had known her forever. I've never really enjoyed the whole manicure experience before. Now I know it's all dependent on the person you get.

Not only did my nails look fabulous, the polish stayed out without chipping for a cool six days. It might have lasted even longer had I not pushed them to the limits with cleaning, cooking, moving furniture around (renovations!) and cleaning out a jam-packed closet (anyone need fingerless gloves or a soap dispenser?).

I am so glad Melissa is in town because on the rare occasion I get my nails done, I'm def going to her.

You should too.

- Anna BarseghianCelebrity Hair and Makeup Artist, Brennen Demelo Studio & Judy Inc.
Beauty Appointment: Hairstyling services

I have short hair so I didn't think there was much for anyone to work with. 

That's because I hadn't been in the talented hands of Anna Barseghian before.

This sexy rocker chick who rides a motorcycle took my uptight do, and for the first time in my life since I was a teenager, made me feel good in my naturally wavy hair.

She evoked the tousled, just-out-of-bed look on me of all people. Ooh, so sexy and uninhibited. And it's a hard look to achieve, to get it just right. Trust me, this kind of unstructured billow takes talent. Do it wrong and it looks like disaster struck. In Anna's hands, it looked completely natural.

Thanks to Anna, I no longer reach for my flat iron every day.

- Erin Will, ACI Brands
Beauty Appointment: Stila Makeup Application

I wear Stila Stay All Day 10-in-1 HD Illuminating Beauty Balm every chance I get. It is the perfect "no makeup" makeup that adds radiance to your skin while evening things out. So when I saw Erin was doing all Stila on me I was stoked.

She did a dramatic eye similar to hers (gorgeous by the way and THE best brows), filled in and shaped my brows, and added a berry lip colour that gave me a flushed, natural look.

I looked like me only better. It's what we strive for every day with our makeup, but don't always achieve. With Erin talented hands, mission accomplished.


Thank you OverCat for making me feel like a star every year (and for keeping me looking youthful despite my age with all of your incredible products). I felt fabulous at my dinner and event that night and then rocked my tan all week (what a difference it makes).

And thank you to all the talented women above who transformed me from guinea pig to swan. It took a village, but you all made me feel truly beautiful inside and out.

Stephanie Dickison

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