iPhone SE a smart phone for back to school I held out for as long as I could, but I finally got my son his very own cellphone. Sure, he’s had hand-me-downs with no sim card, which was only good for at-home use or places where he could mooch off someone else’s wi-fi. But, until now, he’s not had his very own brand-new phone, complete with his own phone number and data plan. I admit I was worried when hearing friends talk about how their teenagers spent hundreds of dollars a month in data overages or how their kids’ faces were always buried in their phones. Was my son going to ring up a huge bill, while ignoring my pleas to watch Fuller House? Maybe. But now that he’s had a phone for a few months now, I have to admit, I wish I had done it sooner. Once we established some ground rules: no phone in the bedroom on school nights, he always has to pick it up when we call and no going over his data plan, it’s been nice to be able to contact him when he’s out of the house without relying on his friends’ phones. Choosing the right phone There’s no shortage of smartphones on the market, but after careful consideration and research, we chose the new iPhone SE for my son. Because my son is obsessed with Instagram and TikTok, a good camera was a must and the iPhone SE has the same camera as the iPhone 11. The camera includes portrait mode with all of the studio-style lighting effects, next-generation smart HDR and optical image stabilization. It also takes amazing videos with its cinematic video stabilization in the front and rear cameras, 4K at 60fps video quality (which is broadcast quality) on the rear camera. Basically, this means his TikToks will be lit. In addition to a great camera, this phone also has the same A13 Bionic chip as the iPhone 11. This is the fastest chip in a smartphone and means the iPhone SE will be really fast and will feel fluid, whether he is launching apps, playing graphics-intensive games, or trying new augmented reality experiences. Other perks As a parent on a limited budget, the iPhone SE is one of the most reasonable smartphones on the market, starting at $599 CAD. For that price, you also get access to the Apple ecosystem (family sharing, App Store, security and privacy features, Screen Time). In addition, you’ll get a free
4 Grad Gift Ideas They'll Love Whether your son or daughter is graduating from high school or university/college, you'll want to mark and celebrate the occasion with the perfect gift! Since we’re all staying close to home these days, here are some great grad gift ideas that your teen and young adult will love and enjoy while at home. 55-inch TCL Roku TV If there’s anything we’re all doing these days, it’s binge-watching our favourite shows. I think your graduate would be thrilled with their own 55-inch TCL Roku TV! It’s super easy to set up. You just create a Roku account and set it up with your Internet and then you have all the popular streaming apps like Netflix, Prime, Disney+ and Crave, etc at your fingertips. It’s powered by the Roku OS system and actually provides access to more than 150,000 movies and TV shows from top free and paid channels, so it is easier than ever to binge-watch your favourites! And, if they’re night owls, they can watch without disturbing you because the Roku mobile app enables you to use private listening when you connect a pair of headphones to your phone! The picture itself is 4K so it’s very crisp and clear and makes binge-watching a picture-perfect experience! $400, roku.com Hamilton Beach DrinkMaster While you’re watching your favourite show, why not enjoy a homemade milkshake?! This DrinkMaster Chrome Classic from Hamilton Beach has a cool, 50s diner vibe that I love and it whips up serious delicious drinks in no time flat. You can make your favourite milkshake, but you can also make smoothies or malts too! It has two speeds and comes with this 28-ounce mixing up, which gives you plenty of room without worrying about it spilling all over. And it looks neat on your counter too! $70, hamiltonbeach.ca 10.2-inch iPad An iPad is always a great gift, especially for graduates. This is the 10.2-inch iPad and it’s a great way to stay in touch with friends and family with Facetime and now, of course, Zoom. They can also use it to download their favourite apps, watch TV and movies, listen to music, and even use it as a portable tablet if they’re planning on continuing their studies in the fall. It’s great because you can easily add a Smart Keyboard, Apple Pencil and use your iCloud account to transfer work between a student’s Mac and iPhone. $429+, apple.ca The Knot Dr.
9 Mother’s Day Gifts She’ll Love So, this is a weird Mother’s Day, right? Instead of brunch out or a big family dinner, you might have to send your love over a Zoom call. The good news? You can still show how much you appreciate and adore Mom with these gifts that can be easily ordered online and delivered straight to her home —and her heart. Conair Unbound Auto Curler Just because she may not be going out, doesn’t mean she won’t want to look her best. This cordless hair curler creates luxurious curls and beautiful beachy waves anytime, anywhere. It’s rechargeable so Mom can pack it in her purse when she’s finally able to hop a plane and come visit you! $129.99, conaircanada.ca Belif Aqua Bomb Sleeping Mask Bring the spa experience home to Mom with this innovative jelly-pudding mask that replenishes and revives dull, dry skin with explosive hydration. She can put her best face forward on Mother’s Day when she wakes up with a radiant and dewy glow, just in time for your family’s Zoom call! $45, sephora.com/ca Quo Beauty Flash Dry Nail Colour Perfect for the DIY mani-pedi, this two-coat, fast dry nail polish is long-wearing and creates a smooth, hard finish on nails. It comes in 30 gorgeous shades. $11, beauty.shoppersdrugmart.ca/ Google Nest Hub Max Perfect for the home chef or video call queen, the Google Nest Hub Max is perfect for catching up with the family, finding new recipes or even just displaying family photos. All she has to do to get started is say, “Hey Google.” $299+, store.google.com/ca/product/google_nest_hub_max Roku® Streaming Stick™+ Perfect for binge-watching her favourite show, the Roku Streaming Stick sets Mom up for streaming free TV, live news, sports, music, movies and more! She’ll not only love the picture-perfect quality, but she’ll also adore the feature where she can search her show of choice via the voice remote! $70, roku.ca iRobot Braava jet m6 Bid adieu to the mop and broom! This Wi-Fi-connected Braava jet m6 robot mop delivers fresh, clean floors throughout the entire home – learning, mapping, and adapting from room to room. Using Imprint Link Technology, the Braava jet m6 also teams with Roomba s, i and 900 series, and automatically starts mopping after vacuuming is finished. $550, shop.irobot.ca/ Vivier Anti-Aging Program Give Mom the gift of glowing skin with Vivier’s Anti-Aging Program. The program reduces fine lines and wrinkles, aging and expression lines, while at the same time improving your skin’s moisture,
How Vivier Helped My Skin Win the War Against Winter By Rachel Naud Ok, ladies. It’s time for some real talk. Middle age + Rosacea + Dry Winter Conditions does not a good complexion make. “Mom, what’s wrong with your face?” It became a question I heard more than once from my teenaged son. Maybe I was just avoiding mirrors or maybe I was just in denial — isn’t everyone blotchy after a shower? — but my skin was red, blotchy and dehydrated, and not just after my daily shower, but well into the day and even into the evening hours. And, if it was windy outside? Forget about it. I would break out in full-out hives. So, obviously, this wasn’t going to do. Yes, I work from home 90 per cent of the time and can hide behind the safety of my four walls, but as the editor of this publication, I often go on TV. And there’s nothing private about that. Basically, my skin was waging a war with winter and the season was kicking my butt – and my face. So, when I got the chance to try these products from Vivier Skin Care, I jumped at the chance. What I received: Ultimage The website vows you’ll look up to five years younger in 30 days by using this product. The hyaluronic acid (something we lose with age) in this smooth gel regulates water content, elasticity and distributes nutrients. It hydrates your skin, allowing it to appear smoother and more radiant. Ultimage also includes neuropeptides, which smooths and softens skin, while reducing the depth of wrinkles and fine lines. GrenzCine Serum I have tried this serum before and it didn’t disappoint the second time around. I would recommend this serum to any woman in her 40s as it’s the first multi-layer and multi-function slow-release anti-aging line that results in beautiful, more luminous, plumper and healthier-looking skin. This serum is a combination of Vivier’s patented pharmaceutical-grade vitamin C and its Polyamine-DAB to create an antioxidant-rich and anti-aging treatment. It’s perfect for thinner skin that needs a dose of hydration and a boost in luminosity, texture and elasticity. C E Peptides Vitamin C isn’t just for keeping colds at bay. Turns out, it’s super good for your skin, and this serum contains the highest grade of vitamin C that is readily available. It not only protects your skin against harmful radicals, but it prevents future skin damage. It’s known to fade brown spots
7 Last-Minute Gifts They'll Love Teens can be a tough crowd when it comes to gift-giving. Their interests can come and go as fast as a winter storm! That's why we handpicked a selection of items any teen will love to receive this holiday season. Happy Holidays!! LG G8X ThinQ DualScreen phone As smartphones become more evolved, we have higher expectations of them. On average, we are conducting seven transitions between four different apps, every time we use our phones. This is why the LG G8X ThinQ DualScreen phone is perfect for the teen who likes to use their phone for a variety of reasons from talking and texting to video calling, playing games or even doing their homework. This phone is super cool because it comes with a removable second screen, complete with a 360-degree hinge! This empowers users to flip the screen and lock it at any angle - perfect for reviewing material while taking notes or even just watching YouTube! When flipped horizontally, gaming teens can use the left screen as a monitor while the right-hand screen turns into a controller with its LG Game Pad. The OLED screen display allows users to enjoy their favourite content with more vivid colours and greater clarity! To figure out which plan would work best for your teen, check with your local retail providers, or visit lg.ca. PS VR Blood & Truth and Everybody’s Golf VR Bundle Discover a new world of play with PlayStation VR. Its innovative design puts you inside your new favourite games, with a growing library of titles that offer immersive gameplay, seamless interaction and impressive graphics. This bundle includes a PlayStation VR Headset, PlayStation Camera, PlayStation VR Move controllers, and vouchers to redeem copies of Blood & Truth and Everybody’s Golf VR. More information can be found here. Tervis Reusable Drinkware Since 1946, Tervis has been making sustainable drinkware with a lifetime guarantee. We love this cup for a cute stocking stuffer, and if your teen is into the new show, Mandalorian, they'll be sure to dig this! Casper Weighted Blanket This weighted blanket is brand new to Casper! These are popular because not only are they super cozy but they have been proven to help reduce anxiety and stress while helping you relax! It has a micro-bead fill, which is evenly distributed but is also made with a breathable cotton cover to keep you comfortable. Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer For the teen who takes too long
Hyundai Palisade Proves to be a Fab Family Car My name is Rachel Naud and I’m a Toyota girl. I have owned and driven Toyota cars for the past 16 years and thought no other manufacturer could ever break the bond I have with my beloved brand of choice. Then I had the opportunity to drive a 2020 Hyundai Palisade for a week, and it got me in my feels. Firstly, the vehicle is b-e-a-u-t-i-f-u-l. I’m talking strangers-coming-up-to-you-to-ask-what-kind-of-car-it-is hot. And, guess what: Even though it offers up some serious eye candy, it’s a total mom-mobile, which just goes to show you CAN have it all, ladies! The Palisade has good looks, great function and —the best part — you won’t need to work into your golden years to pay it off. Luxury ride The Palisade is Hyundai’s largest SUV. With its third row of seating, eight people can easily and comfortably fit in the car. While the third row in many vehicles is often where the kids who draw the shortest straws have to sit, this isn’t the case with the Palisade. There is actual leg room back there, so your very-backseat passengers don’t have to ride with their knees touching their chins. It’s also super easy to fold those seats up and down when needed as it’s as simple as pressing a button. Same with lifting the trunk of the car, which was super helpful when walking to the car with handfuls of groceries or sports equipment. The interior is luxurious throughout with its quilted Napa leather seats, 10-inch touchscreen navigation and more outlets than I have ever seen on four wheels. There’s no chance of anybody’s smartphone or tablet dying on a road trip, which is music to any parent’s ears. While, we’re now going into the cooler, fall months, when I drove the Palisade, it was during the peak summer temps of August. Why am I telling you this? Because the Palisade has COOLING. SEATS. It’s a feature I never knew I needed in my life. As the hot sun was beating down on the car and through the windows, my backside enjoyed an easy, breezy cooling sensation that kept me comfy, even in the longest traffic jam. For those colder fall and winter days, there is also the option to warm the seats and the steering wheel for toasty travels. Fun features There’s a lot to love about this car, but one of the features I
The Serum That Saved My Skin By Rachel Naud “What did you do to your face?!” my bestie asked over one of our daily Face Time calls. “What do you mean?” I said, self-consciously touching my cheeks? “It looks ….. so good!” As a 42-year-old with rosacea, I had grown accustomed to having a red, often blotchy face, especially after having a shower. Having lived with the skin condition for 12 years, I could easily pinpoint exactly when my face would flare up from the heat, cold, wind, spicy food and even stress. I was also developing dark sun spots on my forehead from my past sins as a sun worshipper. But, lately, I had realized after stepping out the shower, my jawline wasn’t riddled with bright red blotches. Where my cheeks, chin and forehead were once blushing red, they were actually normal. Even glowing. I had tried so many skincare lines throughout the years, so when I received some samples of Vivier products, I didn’t think much about it, as nothing I had used before had ever made a difference. Until now. Vivier GrenzCine Serum Before receiving this serum, I had never even heard of GrenzCine, in fact, I’m pretty sure I’m still not pronouncing it right. But, basically, this serum is formulated for aging skin. It increases firmness and hydration of your skin, while diminishing fine lines and wrinkles and improving skin tone, luminosity and elasticity. It’s perfect for skin that has been exposed to the sun as well as laser treatments, chemical peels or microdermabrasion. How it works The reason behind my newly glowing complexion is because The Vivier GrenzCine Serum is comprised of a patent-pending combination of Polyamine-DAB and Vitamin C, which is unique to Vivier. Polyamine-DAB is naturally present in our bodies and known to play a role in the aging process, essentially making our cells and collagen work more effectively. While you can use the serum twice daily, I reserved it for only morning use after my shower. In addition to the serum, I also used the GrenzCine Eye Cream. It moisturized and plumped the skin under my eyes so well that I affectionally started calling it “momma’s little helper.” There are other products you can use in this line as well, although I haven’t tried some of them. The GrenzCine line consists of the GrenzCine Body, Serum, Eye, and Neck, for head-to-toe treatment. All GrenzCine products work to increase luminosity and moisturization (which is why I
Oh Brother! Why you need this labeller in your life (right now!) Label makers can be an organizer’s best friend. A simple label can instantly transform a space or object. And, while label makers have been traditional in style and use, Brother has upped the label game with a label maker that works with your Apple/Android phone and tablet to deliver personalized, easy labels. So, whether you’re labelling your office supplies (somehow, they always go missing, right?), creating personalized gifts (perfect for weddings!), or adding labels to your beauty supplies when travelling, Brother has a label maker and an app for that. Wondering how a labeller can help you de-stress and organize? We’ve created a list of creative ways you can use one! Ingredient & Spices If you’re the type of person that removes spices from the original container, then you will truly appreciate this next hack! Simply create labels for your spices. This will save you time from guessing which spice is in which bottle. Clothes Is your kid attending camp? Moving into a dorm? Are you doing some travelling yourself? Why not label your clothing to avoid confusion? By labelling your clothes, you help avoid someone accidentally taking your clothes. You can simply print out your name and add it to the back of a shirt. Also, Brother sells the perfect fabric tape (TZE-FA3) for this! Plants Most of the time people throw away the box and label that comes with a plant. What happens when you forget which plant is which? Try creating labels and attaching them to a popsicle stick to avoid guessing. Additionally, you can simply add the labels to a plant pot, especially for indoor plants. The tapes are laminated, making it ideal for both indoor and outdoor use because the tape is waterproof and fade-resistant. Now you’re probably wondering which label maker you should get. Imagine a label maker that works with your Apple/Android phone and tablet to deliver personalized, fun labels. Or a label maker that allows you to choose the size and style of tape you wish to use. You can get all this and more with the Brother P-Touch CUBE PT-P300BT. Why we love the P-Touch CUBEPT-P300BT No other labeler has an app or interface like this! The Brother P-touch Design&Print app, which you can download for free on iOS and Android devices, makes creating labels fun and easy. Once downloaded, you can create unique labels on your P-Touch CUBE by
10 Last-Minute Mother's Day Gifts She'll Love Buying for the mothers in your life can be hard. That’s why we’ve chosen 10 gift ideas for the women that do so much everyday. By Rhiannon Ness 1: Dyson Supersonic hair dryer, $499, dysoncanada.ca Spoil your mom with the best in luxury hair care. This hairdryer saves time and leaves a sleek finish compared to a regular dryer, so mom can get right back to her busy schedule! It relies on its power to dry hair fast instead of just using extreme heat, making this a healthier and quicker alternative to a regular hair dryer. 2: Breville Smart Tea Infuser Compact, $199, breville.com The Breville smart tea infuser does all the hard work for you. It knows the proper temperature and steep time your mother’s favourite tea needs, so she can just set the timer and go! 3: Casper Hybrid Mattress, $925+, casper.com Maximize your mom’s sleep by getting her one of these mattresses. They’re comfortable and limit the body pain that is usually caused by other mattresses. The mattress features temperature-regulating technology to prevent overheating, as well as upgraded support technology to address aches and pains for the most comfortable sleep. 4: Cute mom mugs, $14, chapters.indigo.ca For the caffeinated mother, these mugs show your appreciation for everything that Mom does (and she’s reminded every morning!). 5: Bite Beauty lip set, $39, sephora.com For the makeup lover, this Bite Beauty lip set contains three lipsticks, a lip balm and a lip mask in a travel pouch. Bonus: they’re cruelty-free and made in Canada! 6: Tropical iced tea set, $39, davidstea.com Kickstart summer with this iced tea kit from David’s Tea. The kit includes three teas, a spoon and a steeper so your mom can indulge in these tropical iced teas on a hot day. 7: Conversations with my Momby Lark Crafts $14, chapters.indigo.ca This collaborative journal is something you and your mom work on together. It features guided questions to get you talking about things you might never have mentioned before. This book is a conversation between each other and is something you’re both bound to cherish. 8: Pandora charm bracelet, $75, Pandora.net A Pandora charm bracelet is something you can add to every year. There are Disney charms, mom charms, grandmother charms, mother-son charms, mother-daughter charms—charms for every occasion and every mother! 9: Drunk Elephant Littles Kit, $110, sephora.com This Drunk Elephant skincare set is great for all skin types. Whether your mom’s skin concerns are hyperpigmentation, aging skin or dullness, she will be sure to love the products
5 Ways to Get Festive with the HP Sprocket Printer The HP Sprocket Printer is one of the season’s hottest gifts for teens. And, while it’s perfect for printing photos and sharing with friends, there is more you can do with the HP Sprocket Printer than just print and share photos. For the ultimate in festive fun, here is 5 ways you can spread the holiday cheer with your HP Sprocket Printer. Sweet Treats. If you’re gifting a jar of your famous shortbread or Christmas bark to friends and family, use your HP Printer Sprocket to make a very personal label! Maybe it’s a picture of your bestie enjoying your treats? Or perhaps it’s a snapshot of the two of you together? Either way, they’ll be sure to love the package as much as what is inside. String it up. Whether you’re decorating for a party or want to add some flair to your bedroom, the HP Sprocket LED String Light Clips lets you deck your halls with memories of friends and family throughout the holidays! Throughout the year, you can swap out the photos each season! Put together a holiday bullet journal. Bullet journals are the latest trend wherein practicality meets creativity. Part To-Do Lists, Part Planner and Part Diary, these all-in-one organizers are ideal for keeping your tasks on track while writing down your deepest thoughts or sharing life’s happy moments. A reminder of an upcoming New Year’s Eve party can be heightened with photos printed from your HP Sprocket Printer of all the fun you had at the party once you get home! Map it out. Are you travelling over the holidays? Tape a map to your wall and print out photos from your journeys. Dot the map with memories of skiing in the West Coast or sipping frosty mocktails poolside in Cancun. Better than any passport stamp, your HP Sprocket Printer photos will brighten your map while taking you down memory lane every time you look at it. Tag. You’re it. Need a creative tag to put on a hostess gift? Or meeting up to exchange gifts with friends on Boxing Day? Instead of sticking a generic tag on a present, print out a photo of the two of you and attach it to the gift for a personalized festive touch.