Well, this IS a fitness blog. And we DO discuss how to work on the INSIDE to benefit the OUTSIDE. Today is my day off. I'm not discussing fitness today. And, in fact, I feel like being entirely superficial today.

I just got back from the mall and I feel like listing my top favourite beauty products. If you put work into polishing the inside, hey - go nuts polishing the outside.

Those who know me, know that I am a beauty product junkie. Yes, I'm very serious about fitness. And no, my workouts are not "girly". BUT, I am! And I think it's important to spoil yourself just a little bit, get dressed up now and then... Feel amazing.

So, here are my favourite brands / products that I am commitetted to after probably 15 years of rabid experimentation:

HAIR: Shampoo and Conditioner - Frederic Fekkai leaves it the softest, and feeling the most healthy, weightless and shiny.

Hairstyling products - Frederic Fekkai's Essential Shea Pot de Creme - a styling and conditioning product in one. It works like MAGIC and smells amazing. Bumble and Bumble styling cream - I throw this in when I don't blowdry, and it dries with natural, shiny waves. Frederic Fekkai's hairspray - perfect hold, perfect look, and you can't tell there's any hairspray in your hair.

FACE: Cetaphil facewash is the mildest and most effective facewash I've ever used, and I've used almost everything. I never like to switch this one up, it goes with me everywhere. It cleans without any harsh ingredients - is simple and uncomplicated. My skin prefers it over everything else. Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizer (gel in the summer, lotion in the winter) is again so pure, does its job perfectly well with enough moisture to make skin feel replenished but with zero greasiness. Origins High Potency Night-A-Mins eye cream - the right amount of thickness, the right amount of moisture, absorbs perfectly while staying slightly damp for a heavier, overnight fix. Smells lovely.

MAKEUP: BareMinerals by Bare Escentuals is the greatest foundation I've ever used. You brush it on like a powder, and a couple of seconds later you have full coverage, even tone in your skin, but it looks like you're not wearing any makeup at all. Your skin has glow and looks matte in all the right places. You can't feel it, you can't see it, but your skin looks magically flawless. Incredible! Nars and Mac blush are the best - they blend in the best, they have the best shades... are typically not overpowering, just really compliment the colour in your face. Again, you don't LOOK like you have a ton of makeup on, you just look fresh, healthy and pretty. I use drugstore eyeliners, because I feel they're all the same. Annabelle and Rimmel are cheap and great. L'oreal felt-tip liquid liner is the easiest to control in a flash, stays on if you use an eyelash curler afterward (which I often do when going out), and doesn't take scrubbing to get off (damaging to the delicate eyelid area). Clinique Lash Doubling Mascara is my forever favourite. I've probably tried more mascaras than anything else. It applies just enough product, slick, as thickly as you want it, and it doesn't dry out as quickly as others. No clumps! Stays on very well with zero smudging from 6am right until... well... whenever you take it off. Lip Glosses - Nars and Mac. Not gunky, no awful smell, not sticky, just luxurious colours and textures. Lipstick - MAC! Their chemistry is perfect - the longwear ones stay on forever, and the others have whatever perfect consistency that they advertise. Fail-proof.

NAILS: I love Burt's Bees cuticle cream - it smells great and really soothes, and doses the cuticles with moisture. OPI and Essie are the best nail polishes. They look the best on, there's no question about it. I can always tell the difference. I really dislike Mac's nail polish because it gunks up so soon after opening - meaning you can only really use it a few times before you will mess up your nails everytime. OPI and Essie last forever and keep looking great, and keep do-it-yourself feeling like a breeze.

BODY: I use Body Shop's Shea Body Butter when I go out, because it leaves your skin looking dewy, dosed with moisture, and smelling just nicely enough without overpowering your perfume. For everyday, I use St. Ives Renew / Collagen Elastin. Not because I feel that is really keeps my skin taught (nutrition and fitness do that best) but because it quenches my skin just the right amount, without leaving ANY greasiness. Less dewy of a look than Body Shop Shea Body Butter, which is much more rich and better for showing a lot of skin on a night out.

ALL-AROUND: Vaseline Petroleum Jelly is one of my favourite products, straight up. I use it on my lips every night, and sometimes hands and feet for a big moisture boost. Just be ready for people to make all kinds of comments if they see it beside your bed. And speaking of lip balms, the Body Shop Hemp Lip Conditioner is the BEST I've ever used (besides Vaseline). I also have every flavour of Burt's Bees, so I have one in every purse. It's important to feel moisturized at all times!

So, thanks for bearing with me. Tomorrow I'll be ready to put my running shoes back on, and get back to transforming the inner layer again! NOTHING on the outside looks good if you don't take care of the original canvas. That's a fact.

*all products are available at Shoppers Drug Mart, Sephora and the Body Shop.