Saturday, August 11, 2018


"Whenever life gets you down, it's important to remember to face the darkness -- instead of trying to run away from it. Because you can never really run away from it. It'll only get worse. Turn around and face it head-on."

Heather is a musician who sings old country and blues cover songs. "Someone once said I sound like Joni Mitchell. That's a pretty big compliment. I started playing guitar because I wanted to jam with my friends around campfires, but now it's taken on a life of its own."

Her first solo show is happening tonight at Cafe Embargo in Parkdale.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018


"My name is Charlotte and I host a YouTube news channel for youth. I have just gone through a break-up, and lately I just don't feel like wearing make-up, looking good for anyone, or wearing a bra for that matter. Naturally the responses on the channel from viewers have been rude and sexist. 'What have you done to your face?', 'She looks like a man', 'she's flat chested' and so forth; which reinforces the fact that we live in a society where the value of women is determined by how much make-up they are wearing, how feminine and submissive they are, and whether or not their breasts are popping out of their shirts. I am not only beautiful, I am kind, I am smart, I am talented, I am funny and I am generous. I am a woman and I am so much more than my appearance. And I have nice tiddays so suck it!"

That's a direct quote from one of Charlotte's Instagram posts and when I saw it on my feed, I reached out to her to find out what led her to share such a deeply personal story.
Charlotte: "I always tried so hard to be this perfect girl with the perfect make-up and lashes, but now I want people to see me for who I am. Instagram posts are usually fake and I wanted to share something that was real to help people. It's been also therapeutic hearing some of my followers' responses. I don't know -- maybe I shared too much, but I was just so angry at the time. I just wanted something good to come out of it and inspire people to feel happy to be who they are."

TorontoVerve: "You're one of the hosts of Information Overload on YouTube. It must be tough feeling all that pressure to always look your best for the camera."

Charlotte: "Yeah, I don't have a make-up artist. I spend hours on my make-up and hair. I try my best to look like the ideal hot girl, but the fact of the matter is -- it's not about being a hot girl. I'm reading the news. I'm trying to inform people. I don't want people to stare at me because they like my outfit. I want people to hear what I'm saying. Long story short -- most people weren't used to seeing me without my make-up so they were being rude and sexist. I stopped wearing a bra. I have breasts -- I'm just putting that out there, but certain shirts make it look like I don't. An alarming amount of people said that I was flat chested. Why aren't they commenting on my ability to do my job? Would they do that to a male host? Probably not. And I don't think that's fair."
TorontoVerve: "I hate those paparazzi photos exposing female celebrities without make-up. Who cares?"

Charlotte: "Exactly. Everyone was freaking out when [singer] Alicia Keys walked the red carpet without make-up. 'How could she not wear make-up in public?' This is how you don't wear make-up in public! Who knows? I might grow out of it, but right now, I'm feeling good without it. Remember -- someone might fall in love with your face, but they'll stay with you for your personality."
Follow Charlotte on Instagram, Twitter and YouTube. And catch her on Information Overload.