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Source: Alison Roman’s Dining In

Today I wanted to share this AMAZING chocolate chip shortbread recipe with you! Trust me, there’s a good reason it was named “Cookie of the Year” in 2017!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons chilled salted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 6 ounces (170 grams) semi-sweet dark chocolate, chopped (you want chunks, not thin shards of chocolate)
  • 1 large egg
  • Raw sugar, for rolling
  • Flaky sea salt for sprinkling

Beat the butter, granulated and brown sugars, and vanilla with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add flour, and mix until combined. Add chocolate chunks and mix just until incorporated. Mixture should look crumbly.

Divide between two sheets of parchment paper and form the dough, using your hands, into log shapes about 2 to 2 1/4 inches in diameter. Chill dough until totally firm, about 2 hours.

Once dough is chilled, heat your oven to 350°F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. Lightly beat the egg brush it over the sides of your dough. Sprinkle some raw sugar onto parchment paper and roll the logs into it, coating them evenly.

Using a sharp serrated knife, cut logs into 1/2-inch thick rounds. You will hit some chocolate chunks, so be gentle. Arrange the cookie slices on prepared baking sheets one inch apart (they don’t spread much) and sprinkle each cookie with a few flakes of salt. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until cookie edges are beginning to get golden brown. Let cool slightly before transferring to wire racks.

Please note that this is not *my* recipe, but wanted to share for those of you who haven’t heard or tried it yet. It’s totally life changing, and oh so worth it! You can also freeze the dough logs for later use.

♡ Lauren

Happy New Year lovies!

Wow! It’s been a long time since my last post. As most of you are aware, 2017 was a crazy year for me – I got married, settled into a new house, adopted two kitties and finally took the plunge into YouTube (more on all of this to come, I promise)!

For now I thought I’d jump on here quickly to say hi and also share my recent SAS Bath & Body Works haul in which I *finally* completed my 2014 Sweet Shop Collection. Yes, along with all things beauty I’m also obsessed with… candles!

I picked up Bubblegum, Frosted Cupcake, Raspberry Peach Macaron, Lemon Drops, Lavender Marshmallow, Strawberry Sorbet and Honey Cinnamon Crumb Cake – some of these scents are still available on their website, but they’re going fast.

Are any of you as obsessed with candles as me!? I absolutely LOVE Bath & Body Works, Diptyque, Byredo, Jo Malone, Yankee Candle and DW Home. Let me know some of your faves below – I’m always interested in discovering great new brands/scents!

I’m so, so, SO excited for all to come in 2018; especially expanding LL to include recipes, fashion & decor!

Talk soon,


Hi lovelies! I hope that you are all having an amazing summer! Life has taken over once again as I’ve been swamped with wedding planning and house renovations and in turn I’ve been severely neglecting my hair and nails (I know, SO bad). My hair has turned into a frizzy, unmanageable mess that I just throw into a bun everyday and forget about.

I am literally that girl that has 328749 products (both high end and drugstore) that have done nothing significant for her hair. It can be frustrating to find hair care products that actually work, which is why I want to share an amazing, affordable brand I found at Trade Secrets recently (they always have the best selection)! If you want to know which products transformed my frizzy, damaged hair then keep on reading!

Like anyone else I like to do my research before trying new products, which is exactly what I did when I stumbled upon milk_shake products on Trade Secrets website. milk_shake’s hair care is dedicated to finding solutions for ALL hair types, making most of nature’s benefits. They use natural ingredients such as milk and yogurt proteins as well as fruit extracts. They are all about protecting the environment (reduced sulfates, parabens and sodium chloride), which is also super important to me. The packaging is completely recyclable too.

Why do they use milk protein? It has a highly conditioning effect on your hair’s structure and results in increased volume, elasticity, damage repair and colour enhancement.

These are the products I picked out and how they worked for me:

incredible milk 12 effects | This is a spray-type leave in treatment suitable for all hair types formulated with murumuru butter. I felt immediate results with this product – I applied on damp hair focusing on the ends and my hair felt super soft and silky. It also made styling my hair a breeze, which is a huge plus.

milk_shake no frizz glistening milk | This glistening milk is made with date seed extract and gives added moisture and shine to frizzy, dull hair. It’s been humid AF here in Montreal AKA frizz central, and sadly when I’ve used other anti-frizz products the effects wear off after a few hours. I love this one because it gave long-lasting results.

milk_shake no frizz glistening spray | Also formulated with date seed extract this is a polishing spray for frizzy hair. I have tried sooo many “shine” sprays because my hair tends to look dull at times and usually they do nothing but weigh my hair down. This did the opposite, it gave shine in lack-luster areas but kept my hair feeling bouncy and light. SO GOOD.

milk_shake glistening argan oil treatment | A leave in hair oil made with argan oil suitable for all hair types. This did not weigh my hair down at all and provided lots of extra shine and much needed moisture. I applied on damp hair (PS this one smells sooo good).

After using these products my hair is:

Visibly shiny.


Less frizzy.


Strengthened (I see less split ends and fall out).

I have to say that milk_shake‘s products really do live up to their reputation of smelling incredible – especially the incredible milk (literally good enough to eat – but don’t!) the best part, though, is that they actually work! We all know that results are most important when it comes to hair care products so milk_shake is a major win for me. Check out their Facebook page and Instagram to find out more. You can find milk_shake products at your local Trade Secrets as well as online (all orders ship for free!)

Have any of you tried milk_shake? Let me know in the comments below.

♡ Lauren




Hi my loves! Today I have the entire essie summer 2017 collection to share with you all! This collection was designed in collaboration with Rebecca Minkoff, so before we jump in, I’ll let you read her note:


‘baguette me not’

‘s’il vous play’

‘éclair my love’

‘fondant of you’

‘sweet soufflé’

Thoughts? Personally, I’m absolutely obessed with ‘s’il vous play’ and ‘sweet soufflé’ and so happy that essie finally came out with a Paris-inspired collection.

The summer 2017 collection was supposed to be released worldwide June 13, 2017 (for $9.99) but they’ve somehow already made their way to certain online retailers and in store. For all things essie related, check out 🙂

♡ Lauren

Hi everyone, today I’ll be sharing all of the #essielook’s from Toronto Women’s Fashion Week fall/winter 2017!

Being backstage at Fashion Week is always hectic but it’s truly incredible to be able to see how all of the beauty looks come together before watching them come to life on the runway. This season, essie Canada‘s lead nail artist, Rita Remark, created six designs for Toronto Women’s Fashion Week (I was lucky enough to work on her team for two shows; Rachel Sin and KQK)!

“For the past few seasons, fall/winter has been random,” says Rita Remark, essie’s global lead educator and nail artist. “I was telling people to wear white and glitter shades. This season, however, we are back to working with very traditional, quintessential fall/winter shades like deep red and dark charcoal, mixed in with metallic accents.” 

Check out the six looks designed by Rita and how to re-create them below:

Rachel Sin

The #essielook at RACHEL SIN | Image by: essie 

Inspiration: “Imagine yourself ballroom dancing, as the movement of your skirt flows with every twirl. The chevron design was used to mimic the neckline of a traditional ballet wrap bodysuit, while the soft palette was the perfect pairing to the muted colours of Rachel Sin’s FW17 collection.

“It’s a negative space at its most demure”, says Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada.” – essie

Nails by me backstage at Rachel Sin

How to get the look: Apply ‘topless and barefoot’, leaving a negative space chevron near the cuticle. Take a striping brush, and trace the line of the chevron, letting one of the lines extend to the tip of the nail using ‘between the seats’. Finish with a coat of ‘matte about you’.

Evan Biddell

The #essielook at EVAN BIDDELL | Image by: essie

Inspiration: “The Evan Biddell collection was inspired by the idea that old is new again. The entire collection was produced from second hand clothing, using surrealist elements and encouraging the viewer to see clothing in a new, refreshing light.

“I wanted take this idea of surrealism and apply it to the nails, using a a glossy black polish as the base and applying a thin line of gold to resemble a cat’s eye”, says Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada.” – essie

How to get the look: Apply two coats of ‘licorice’. Next, draw a line from the cuticle to the end of the nail with ‘good as gold’ using a striping brush. Seal in with ‘good to go’ for an extra glossy finish.


The #essielook at ROCH | Image by: essie

Inspiration: “The latest collection from ROCH encompasses the idea that fearless women are both beautiful and threatening. This was inspired by the Valkyrie of Norse mythology, where the fallen angels sent to battlefield, choose who shall live or die. Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada, created a negative space nail art look with a sharp polished arrow on top of a clean bare nail.

“I wanted to create a minimal but bold and striking look”, says Rita.” – essie

How to get the look: Using ‘licorice’, start at the cuticle and meet at the end of the nail making a negative space diamond point. Finish with ‘good to go’.

Stephan Caras

The #essielook at STEPHAN CARAS | Image by: essie

Inspiration: “Stephan Caras Fall/Winter 2017 collection was inspired by an opulent garden party that goes from day to night. This play on lights and darks allowed Rita to mirror the deep burgundy reds and golds from the collection in the nail design.

“I was able to create rich looking nails that give just a peek of negative space at the cuticle”, says Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada.” – essie

How to get the look: Apply ‘wicked’, stopping mid-nail leaving a negative space near your cuticle. Using a striping brush and ‘good as gold’ trace the border separating the bare and polished space. Finish with ‘good to go’ for high shine.


The #essielook at KQK | Image by: essie

Inspiration: “Sophistication and street wear sensibility is what the KQK Fall/Winter 2017 collection captures for the woman that embodies both styles. Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada, designed a nail look to capture this juxtaposition of classic and edgy using a cherry red that fades seamlessly into a deep, blackened burgundy.

“Using the classic ombre design was the perfect way to create this fierce and commanding look”, says Rita Remark.” – essie

Nails by me backstage at KQK

How to get the look: Apply a thin layer of ‘a-list’ to all nails and let dry. Next, blend ‘a-list’ and ‘wicked’ on a cosmetic wedge sponge and stamp it onto the nail, repeating until desired opacity. Seal everything with ‘good to go’ to really “melt” the two shades together.

TIP: Use a latex barrier and a brush dipped in acetone to clean up around the nails.


The #essielook at HENDRIXROE | Image by: essie

Inspiration: “Think of a tough, pink rock girlfriend or a sullen glam rock band to envision the latest collection from Hendrixroe. With this in mind, Rita created a heavy metal inspired nail art look to complement the collection.

“The design is meant to look like silver studs on a worn dark leather jacket”, says Rita Remark, essie Global Lead Educator and Lead Nail Artist for essie Canada.” – essie

How to get the look: Apply two coats of ‘smokin’ hot’. Using a dotting tool (or bobby pin), place four small, even dots at the base of each nail with ‘no place like chrome’. On the right index finger and the left thumb nail, extend these dots all the way to the tip.


The essie Canada team at Toronto Women’s Fashion Week fall/winter 2017 | Photo by: @annielamstyling

I had SO much fun working backstage with Rita Remark and the rest of the essie Canada team backstage this season! It was such a surreal, cool experience to actually be able to paint nails backstage. Although I was super nervous at first it ended up being one of the most amazing things and I’m glad I pushed myself to do it – thanks essie! 🙂

Will you be re-creating any of these looks? For more information on all things essie, be sure to check out

♡ Lauren