It’s been slightly over a month since the summer solstice, the one day that announces the longest stretch of daylight of the year after which it all goes downhill. After a long winter in Toronto, we’ve been blessed with a fantastic summer thus far and it is standing strong judging by my newly acquired sunburn. Some of the things that often drop at the same time as the tree leaves in autumn are new fragrances. Today on the blog, I’ll be talking about some of the scents that I am most excited to wear, both for the end of summer and the beginning of fall.
For this month’s skincare focus, we are moving away from my usual french brands and crossing the pond to the UK. While we do tend to look towards France, Japan and Korea whenever we think of skincare these days, England has had it’s fair share of fantastic brands. Today’s spotlight is Maria Hatzistefanis’ Rodial.
Throughout history, high fashion designers have always dictated the flow of the trends. From Gabrielle Chanel’s introduction of a minimalistic style for women, Hubert de Givenchy’s iconic little black dress and Yves Saint Laurent’s Smoking suit, fashion designers have shaped the trajectory of fashion and the way people dress. Blessed were the days when they were all driven by their creative force rather than the capitalist one. Unfortunately, most fashion houses suffer from increasing pressure to be profitable and as such they tend to follow trends rather than being at the forefront of fashion anymore.
I was having lunch with the girls the other day and it turns out that we were all craving the same thing: travel. While we have all been to different locations recently, we never managed to go together so we figured that it was time to change that situation. By the end of day, our tickets were booked and two weeks later we packed our bags and headed to the Sunshine State, more specifically to Miami.
Trends usually come and go while style is everlasting. Those are some of the words that I always repeat to myself whenever I try to give in to the impulse purchase of a new trendy piece. I’ve lived through the age of baby doll dresses and pink hair extensions (both pretty but not for me), baggy cargo trousers (also not for me) and most recently the glorification of streetwear with a big emphasis on athleisure and the current obsession with chunky dad sneakers. I have gone through those ages relatively unscratched and with a closet that remained true to my love of minimalist and clean silhouettes. However, there is one trend that I fully decided to embrace this summer: the aloha shirt.
Life truly does work in mysterious ways. Do you ever have something that you really want to do in the back of your mind but simply don't have the opportunity or time to do? That something was travelling for me. Although I’ve always envied my friends who were jetting from location to location, my previous job took too much of my personal time for me to be able to afford the luxury of travelling. Even though I’ve been a freelance blogger for two years now, I still had issues dedicating time to travelling until a few months ago when I started doing more press trips.
Much like the late Frank Sinatra, I’ve wanted to be part of New York, New York for the longest time. Unfortunately due to some complicated logistics, I have never had the chance to step foot in the States in the nine years during which I’ve lived in Toronto, Canada. This May I decided to take matters in my own hand and booked my first trip to the Big Apple in an attempt to decipher the mysteries of the beloved city.
Last month marked the beginning on a new skin related series for me whereby I decided to allocate more time to try out specific product to get a better idea of its effects on my skin over the span of a month. While we started out with one of my favourite brands (Click here to read the post about Avène), I knew that I had to write about another one of my beloved french brands next. The choice was relatively easy and the topic of this month’s skin post is Vichy.
When Giorgio Armani decided to launch his first cologne Acqua Di Gio close to twenty years ago, the designer knew that he was taking a big risk. After all, he was the face of a brand known for its apparel and this first foray into beauty could either become a stepping stone or be a major flop. Luckily for him, Acqua di Gio turned out to be a massive commercial success and it is still the leading men’s fragrance on the market nowadays. To celebrate the launch of Acqua Di Gio Absolu, I was lucky enough to be invited to partake in a sensory experience in Mont Tremblant, Québec.
A few months ago, I attended my very ﬁrst opera at the Four Seasons Center for the Performing Arts and I had such a lovely time that I was looking forward to my next excursion to the gorgeous building. Little did I know that it would happen sooner than later and last week, we headed there once again for the opening night of the Canadian Opera Company’s production of Donizetti’s Anna Bolena.
Out of all the Canadian cities, I am glad that I picked Toronto to be my home. Afterall, the city does offer a lot of opportunities and it is imbued with an intoxication energy that never fails to empower me. However, Montréal was a close second when it came down to finding myself a Canadian home. While the french city tugs at my heartstrings with its gorgeous architecture and food scene, unfortunately its winter was the ultimate factor that caused it to come second to Toronto. I try to visit as often as possible and when Sabrina suggested that we should go for a day trip to the city, we immediately booked our Porter flights.
As I am writing this, Toronto is still surprisingly covered in snow and ice. On the bright side, the weather is supposed to hit the double digits this upcoming week and I couldn’t be happier. Spring is one of my favourite seasons, not because of the blooming of the Magnolias and the melting of the ice block on which I live, but rather because of all the jackets. When you’re a boy, you don't have the beautiful dresses that girls have in the summer and instead, you often have to result to a plain outfit that consists of a t-shirt and shorts. Winter is a write-off as you are covered in the biggest parka jacket that you can find. For me, the two best fashion seasons are spring and fall but unfortunately they are quite short lived. As such, here are four jackets that you should invest on for these few weeks between winter and summer.
It’s common knowledge by now that I am a bit of a skincare junkie. Skin is our biggest organ and it is fully exposed to the outside world so we definitely need to protect and nurture it to the best of our abilities. Skincare laboratories around the world are always working on brand new technologies to help us achieve our skin goals and I am always eager to give them a try. However, unlike makeup, I simply cannot offer you a concrete answer on how much I love a new product within the span of 16 hours. While our skin does absorb quite a fair bit of the products that we put on it, it does take some time for it to truly show any form of improvement. As such, I decided to start a new monthly series on the blog where I’ll be trying a specific skincare regiment or product for the duration of a full month before offering you my opinion on them. For the first segment in this series, I’d like to showcase a brand that has been a favourite of mine for years: Avène.
We are fast approaching the middle of April and it is still snowing in Toronto. I remember the first year I arrived in Canada, it was already warm enough by Saint Patrick’s day for me to simply walk around in a tee-shirt and now I am still debating if I should put away my parka or not. Sure, snow is quite pretty to look at but this prolonged winter is starting to take a toll on my psyche. During the colder months, I do tend to become a hermit and remain confined in the warm cocoon that I call home. However, spending too much time at home does end up driving me a tad mental plus it’s hard to find the motivation to write when you’re not being exposed to anything new. Here’s a couple of things that you could do to spark some fire back into your daily routine without having to move out of your bed.
As I sat down to write this blog post, it dawned on me that my blog is almost at its two year anniversary. I still feel immensely blessed to be able to call this my full time job and it truly wouldn’t have been possible without all of you. What started off as a platform for me to review new food places and openings in Toronto slowly transitioned into a lifestyle blog and a place where I could share my thoughts and feelings. I remember the first time I decided to publish a personal blog post and I felt so anxious about how it would be received and you guys were so supportive through it all. However, when it came down to somewhat polarized subjects, I obviously garnered a few nods of disapproval.
One of the most common questions that I receive via Direct messaging on my Instagram seems to be about social media growth. The subject of growth on the platform has been brought up multiple times in the recent months due to the increasing difficulty to reach a broader audience. With the algorithm set in place, the weird non-chronological feed and the issue of shadow banning when it comes to hashtags, Instagram has become a hard beast to tame. Don’t worry, this isn’t another blog post by a blogger complaining about a decrease in likes or unethical practices in the industry. The focus of this post is about something far more important: branding.
When it comes down to attraction, we all find different traits appealing. Some of us prefer blondes while others love brunettes. We may like our significant other to be serious and smart or a complete goofball. However there is one thing that we can agree on: being well groomed is definitely sexy. Since moving to Canada, Shoppers Drug Mart has been my go-to destination for my grooming products, whether it’s shampoo or skincare and I was excited to check out what new arrivals they have in store at the pop-up that they held this week.
Created in 1828, the house of Guerlain has had a huge impact in the history of perfumery, skincare and cosmetics. Favoured by Empress Eugénie, wife of Napoleon III, the brand soon became the official perfumer of the french court which created an influx of demands from other European royalty including Queen Isabella II of Spain, Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom and Empress Elisabeth of Austria, better known as Sissi. Guerlain created a legacy embedded in quality and innovation, two characteristics that explain the brand’s longevity. I recently had the opportunity to attend a lunch hosted by Guerlain to mark the launch of their new fragrance, Mon Guerlain Eau de Parfum florale.
I was sitting in front of my laptop yesterday trying to figure out the topic of this week’s blog post. It has been a busy couple of weeks and I haven't had much time to sit down and ponder upon the next article that I wished to write. Even though so much had happened, I simply felt mentally drained but I still felt the pressure to post something today. I felt the need to post weekly on the blog to remain relevant and to keep producing content which in turn started making me feel anxious. So yesterday afternoon I decided to take a step back.
The poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow once said that “Music is the universal language of mankind.” There is something sublimely intriguing about music and its ability to convey emotions, whether you understand the language being sung or not. I grew up during the Disney Renaissance Age where music was a focal point of every one of their movies and, as such, I grew to love musical theatre. However, I surprisingly never managed to attend an opera performance until last week.
The first time I went to Copenhagen was over a year and a half ago, slightly before the launch of www.didieryhc.com . The royal Danish city was a place that I was excited to cross off the top of my bucket list and even though my stay there was short, it was one of the most memorable trips of my life. I did not originally shoot the following images with a blog post in mind, however I recently stumbled upon them on my hard drive and I decided to freshen them up. My editing style has changed since then and it's fascinating to see how a little bit of extra saturation can truly bring an image to life. With that in mind, I am finally posting a photo diary of my favourite European city.
Let’s face it: I love to eat out. As a full time content creator, I am always in search of new aesthetically pleasing restaurants and I am always eager to try new food. However, as part of my new year resolutions, I had promised myself that I would try to cook at home more often and to eat in a healthier manner. Only eight percent of us manage to keep our new year resolutions while the others will give up within the first few weeks of the year. Am I part of the eight or the ninety-two percent?
We all have those times when we start feeling a tad uninspired by our surroundings and feel the need for a change of scenery. At times, that simply means that I need to get out of the house, go for a walk and end up at a coffee shop with my computer. On other occasions, it requires a week long trip somewhere completely different to fully recharge my inspiration tank. However, time doesn't always permit such a luxury and when such a situation arises, one of the best options is to partake in a small staycation here in the city itself. With that in mind, I packed a small overnighter bag and headed over to the Shangri-La hotel.
By now, we have all heard of the huge controversy that sparked last week between the Charleville Lodge Hotel and blogger Elle Darby. For those who might be unaware of the incident, Elle wrote an email to the hotel to pitch the idea of a free stay at the location in exchange for showcasing them on her social channels to promote awareness of the amenities to her followers. The hotel owner decided to publicly embarrass the blogger by posting her email and his obvious disdain for the blogging community and the whole affair blew out of proportion quite rapidly. I pondered writing about the subject as my views would obviously be considered biased given my profession of choice but I do believe that this is a subject worth talking about. Without further ado, let’s talk about bloggers and the reality behind our “free” things.
Bonjours Paris! Not unlike most people in the world, I had been daydreaming of visiting the capital of the country that puts such an incredible level of focus on good food and fashion for years. After a week long trip to London, I stepped on a two hour Eurostar train ride and arrived in the french capital. I was ready for four days of stripes, berets, baguettes, cheese and good wine.
If you guys all remember, I had a little trip to London a while back and I even wrote a blog post about it. However, my week-long stay in the British capital was far too extensive to cover it all in one article and I promised a part deux to my London post which is now finally live. Two months later. Sorry guys. In part one, I talked about my love for the British culture and its rich architecture and part two will focus on some of the keys places that made my trip absolutely magical.
It has been a week since the countdowns have restarted and that we are slowly easing into a brand new year. Heads are slowly blurring out from the food and alcohol induced comas and most of us have already set up the goals that we wish to achieve in 2018. However, one cannot move forward without putting the past to rest and as such, I would like to summarize 2017 briefly.
The Grinch’s heart might have grown thrice in size but in my case, it’s my belly that expanded. With a long and joyful winter holiday season coming to an end, we are now finally entering that time of the year where everyone collectively creates another list of resolutions for the new year, yours truly included. Of course, we all make those lists every year: sometimes the resolutions stick and at other times they dissipate within a week or two. Here are some of the things that I would personally like to achieve this upcoming annual cycle.
Merry Christmas everyone! I hope that everybody has been nice all year long and ended up getting the presents that they wanted. Now that this portion of the holiday season is over, we are finally in the finish line towards the new year. Just hold on everyone. You. Can. Do. It. While most of you are now on your Christmas break, as an freelancer my workload isn't quite fully done yet and my days are still somewhat busy. As such, I find myself requiring an outfit that will translate well from day to night and that is end-of-year party appropriate.
Isn’t it crazy to think that we are already at the beginning of December? I swear that the year started yesterday and we already have to prepare for one of the busiest time of the year: end-of-year party season. That usually means that, like many of us will and SHOULD be doing, I will be polishing my best shoes, dry cleaning my suits and starting to slick back my hair to look as presentable as possible to finish off the year beautifully. We all dress to impress but many people tend to forget the primordial finishing touch to a memorable appearance: an unforgettable scent.