Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Camera Confusion - Advice Needed!

So, at the moment I've been relying on my IPhone to take photographs for my blog, which is actually really hard work as the zoom is not amazing. As I've really got hooked with blogging (at last!) I've decided that I need to up my game and purchase a good quality camera to use for my blog posts. The problem is...where do you start?! As I'm hoping to get this camera as a Christmas present (hopefully a very early one if I get my way haha) I don't want to ask for one that costs hundreds. I'm thinking more £150 and under. I'm also not too bothered if it can record videos in great quality, but obviously that would be a plus if I did ever decide to venture into making them...

As Canon is such a well  known and trusted brand in the photography world (I know I sound like I know what I'm talking about but honestly I don't! ha), I would prefer a Canon camera. So, far I have spotted the 'Canon PowerShot SX500 IS 16MP 30x Zoom Bridge Camera' which seems great and although the price varies on different websites, I have found it on offer at just £139.99.

Have you used this camera or do you have any recommendations? Any advice would be much appreciated!

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Product Let Down #2 - Maybelline 'The Rocket' Mascara

Maybelline...seriously what were you thinking? ahhh this mascara is awful and that's putting it politely. I'm usually such a fan of Maybelline mascaras, so I'm actually gutted to have to write this. But, if I'm being honest it is, well...crap. I dislike the packaging, the formula, but most of all I really hate the brush. It is far too wide, which makes the application uncomfortable, clumsy and usually clumpy - if I'm being honest its possibly the worst brush out of all the range that I've tried - and that does have some steep competition, the colossal cat eyes mascara...I'm looking at you! Although this mascara is also part of the volume express range, it does not provide the lashes with any volume at all. It doesn't lengthen them, it doesn't thicken them and it certainly doesn't hold a curl very well - even after the use of eyelash curlers.

The only positive I can say about this mascara is that it's actually okay for bottom lash application, which really surprised me. At first I couldn't understand why it worked so well, particularly as it's so bad at top lash application. However, after I examined the product properly I came to the conclusion that this is probably due to the slightly narrower part of the brush near the tip. It might be an awful mascara in general but as it's sort of got a use, it wasn't a complete wasteful purchase!  

4/10 at the most!

Monday, 28 October 2013

The Blog Recognition - Sunshine Award

Paige from PB Beauty nominated me for the Sunshine Award :-) Thanks so much Paige, make sure you check out her blog too!

1. List 11 facts about yourself.
2. Answer the 11 questions from the blogger that nominated you.
3. Nominate bloggers you feel deserve this award.
4. Write 11 questions for them to answer in their award post.
5. Let the bloggers know that you have nominated them.

11 facts about me:
1. This is the 3rd time I've attempted to blog but now I'm definitely hooked!
2. I have 3 siblings - I'm the joint middle child.
3. I love history and it was my favourite subject in school/college.
4. Hit Me Baby One More Time is one of my all time favourite songs haha
5. I cannot cook, although I like to attempt baking when I can be bothered.
6. I am not very domesticated at all...I would make a very poor housewife!!
7. I'm addicted to crisp, they are my ultimate downfall.
8. I am not very sporty although I go through phases of loving exercise.
9. I watch rubbish TV...a lot.
10. I started reading blogs in 2009 and kick myself for not sticking to blogging years ago.
11. I'm teeny tiny at only 5'2!

11 Questions from Paige:

 1. Why did you start blogging?
As a form of distraction/escape whilst going through a tough time in my life. 

 2. What is one makeup item you always splurge on?
Skincare although that's not technically makeup... 

 3. If you could only choose 3 makeup items to use for the rest of your life, what would they be?
Concealer, Eyebrow Powder and Bronzer!

 4. If you could only shop from one makeup brand, what would it be?
Bourjois without a doubt, love it!

 5. Where is your favourite place to shop for makeup?

 6. Where is your favourite place to shop for clothes?
H&M - the Trend collection specifically

 7. What is favourite thing about blogging?
The feedback from readers, it great when people acknowledge the effort you put into blogging.

 8. Who is your favourite fashion or beauty inspiration?
Eva Mendez, Eva Longoria, Jessica Alba - love the Latina look!

 9. What are your favourite fall fashion or beauty trends?
Tartan, although I don't actually own anything tartan at the moment and dark berry toned lipstick.

 10. If you could choose anything, what would your dream job be?
A Doctor without a doubt.

 11. What is your favourite food?
Chinese, I'm obsessed with it and I have literally tried it in every country I've been!

I nominate:
Caroline -
Chloe -
Emma -
Jodie -

My Questions are:
1. Who is your favourite blogger at the moment?
2. If you watch Youtube, who's your favourite Youtuber?
3. What's your favourite Mac Lipstick or Mac Product (if you don't own any lipsticks)?
4. What is your favourite online beauty site to buy from?
5. How did you initially find out about blogging?
6. What camera do you use to take photographs for your blog and do you have any recommendations?
7. How many posts do you publish each week on average?
8. What's your favourite budget buy?
9. What's your favourite high end buy?
10. How often do you go clothes shopping?
11. How often do you properly clear out your wardrobe?

I really hope you enjoy this award/tag :-)

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Winter Wardrobe Staple - H&M Trend Cardigan A/W 13

I love this mohair blend cardigan! It's from the current H&M Trend collection - which I literally fall in love with every season - and as soon as I spotted this piece, I just knew that I had to have it. It's really unusual, has a slightly oversized fit and it will be great for layering during the colder winter months. As I always play it safe and buy winter knitwear in black, this beige cardigan is also a welcomed change to freshen up my mostly monochrome wardrobe! It's currently sold out in XS online, but it is available in S and M. FYI: I ordered size S and I'm usually a size 8-10 in most clothes stores. I also stumbled across this collage (below) whilst browsing Polyvore, whoever created it has really styled the cardigan well for the current season, whilst further emphasising how chic and versatile it is. This cardigan is currently retailing for £39.99 however, H&M always have valid voucher codes online. It worth doing a quick search before you finalise the checkout, I managed to find a voucher that gave me £10 off - oooh how I love a bargain!

Saturday, 26 October 2013

New Product Find #1 - Beauty UK Eyebrow Kit

I have found an actual beauty gem! Whilst browsing Superdrug's eyebrow kit offerings, although I was initially drawn to the Sleek eyebrow kit (I already own this in the shades light and dark) I spotted the Beauty UK's kit and swiftly added it to my basket. My first impression of the Beauty UK High Brow eyebrow kit was that it seemed to be a dupe for the original HD brow kit. However, as I haven't actually owned the latter, this was solely a visual comparison - the product colours and layout  are pretty similar. However, unlike the HD kit, the Beauty UK version is extremely purse friendly, at a mere £3.99 to be exact! Due to this lower price, I was apprehensive at how the kit would perform however, I can reassure you that I am seriously impressed. So much so, I actually binned my sleek kit (which was on it's last legs) after discovering this beauty gem and I don't think I'll be repurchasing it anytime soon, if ever.
This kit comes in one universal shade and although this is usually limiting, due to the variety of colours available, light brown (which is perfect for blondes), medium brown (think brunettes/auburn hair- plus this my shade!) and dark brown (which would be ideal for dark brunettes and black haired gals), there is a powder available for everyone. This kit also includes a wax, which is an absolute must have in my eyebrow routine. Although I have sparse eyebrows, they are surprisingly unruly at times. FYI, I personally use the wax after the powder application, rather than before it like the kit instructs. I'm not sure if anybody else does this, but it just doesn't work for me when I attempt to do it the other way round.

Have you ever used the Beauty UK eyebrow kit?

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Halloween Makeup Showdown - The Devil vs Poison Ivy

So, these are two Halloween looks that I've rocked in the past. I apologise for the awful photo quality but I didn't take these shots with the intention that one day they would end up on a blog! Excuses over...I thought I would share with you which makeup products I used to create each look. If you're looking for some inspiration this Halloween then I hope you find this post helpful.

Although both look appear similar *again probably due to poor photo quality* I promise you that they are entirely different, I only actually used a couple of products that appear in both.

First up: The Devil

Now, in day to day life I usually stick to the 'dramatic eye' or 'lip' makeup rule - as both together can end up making you look either clown-like or like you've applied your makeup in the dark...with a trowel. Never a good look. However, on Halloween? Hell that rule goes well and truly out of the window. As long as you apply it carefully, that's the key. So yes, I did sport a smokey eye and red lip combo and you know what, I think I pulled it off. I didn't get any obvious stares anyway haha.

Products I used:

*Base: Bourjois 10 hour Sleep Effect Foundation in shade 53.
-  I never used to use concealer, which is crazy as I have ridiculously dark under eye circles!
*Powder: Max Factor Crème Puff in shade Medium Beige.
*Eyebrows: Rimmel Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Brown and Sleek Brow Kit in Light.
*Bronzer: my bronzer of choice was Bourjois Delice de Poudre Bronzing in shade 52.
- No blusher (I never used to wear it)
*Eye shadow: Smokey eye courtesy of Benefit 'Smokin' Eye' kit.
*Eyeliner: Rimmel Kohl pencil in Black and Collection Fast Stroke Liquid Eyeliner in Black.
*Mascara: Maybelline, I switch up which one I purchase each time I run out however, the Colossal one is a firm fave! (Yellow tube)
*Lips: The liner was Rimmel London Exaggerate Lip Liner in Red Diva and the lipstick was Mac Ruby Woo. Perfecto!

Next Up: Poison Ivy

To say I was excited to dress up as Poison Ivy would be an understatement. Since Kim Kardashian rocked the look a few years ago, Poison Ivy has fast become the ultimate 'glam' villain! ooh and boy did I embrace that look. As I decided to wear a wig paired with the infamous ivy mask - FYI, I did a little DIY to it as it was barely big enough to cover my eyes! - I decided to tone down the eye makeup (who am I kidding, I let the lashes do the talkin' instead) and focus on a berry toned lipstick, to compliment the dark wine red hair of course. Unfortunately I didn't have time to create the 'Ivy eyebrows' properly with makeup, but if I do ever get the chance then I'll make sure I update this post.

Products I used:

*Base: A mixture of Dr Jart Water Fuse Beauty Balm and Bourjois Healthy Mix Serum foundation in shade 53 which was used on the areas that needed extra coverage.
*Concealer: A mixture of Rimmel London Wake Me Up Concealer in shade Classic Beige (under eyes) and Collection Illuminating Touch Concealer in shade 2.
*Powder: Rimmel Powder Stay Matte Pressed Powder in Transparent.
*Eyebrows: Rimmel Eyebrow Pencil in Dark Brown, Sleek Brow Kit in Light and Dark and Estee Lauder Automatic Brow Pencil Duo in shade Soft Brown.
*Bronzer: Bourjois Maxi Delight Bronzing Powder - I think this comes in one universal shade.
*Blusher: A mixture of Bourjois Little Round Pot Blush in shade 33 - Lilas D'or and Mac crème blush in shade Lady Blush.
*Highlighter: Mac Fantasy Flower
*Eye Shadow: A subtle smokey eye this time, again using my trusty Benefit 'Smokin' Eye' kit and a random green shadow from a Next makeup compact! 
*Eyeliner: Rimmel Kohl pencil in Black and Collection Fast Stroke Liquid Eyeliner in Black.
*Fake Eyelashes: Primark lashes, yes that's right Primark! A bargain at £1!
*Mascara: Maybelline 'The Rocket' Mascara - FYI, I am not a fan of this product!
*Lips: Rimmel Lasting Finish Matte Lipstick by Kate Moss in shade 107.

Yes, it is a lot of makeup but if you can't get away with it at Halloween, then when can you! ;-) So the ultimate question is, which look do you prefer? The Devil or Poison Ivy??

Sunday, 20 October 2013

The Sunday Manicure - Deep Plum 'Glitter Bomb'

As I haven't shared a manicure post before - which is actually shocking as I always have my nails painted - I thought it was about time that I did. As we are unfortunately heading into the winter season *long sigh* I decided that if you can't embrace vampy nails now, then when can you?! The nails polishes of choice - Barry M Hi Shine Gel Effect in Deep Plum and Technic Polish in Mad Alice (which cost only 99p! at Bodycare). I'm not sure if the latter is actually a dupe of a more high end polish? I say this as I own a fair few and they are usually a cheaper replica of an OPI polish. Anyway, they are both stunning and as always I just cannot fault the Barry M gelly polishes. I'm seriously going to end up owning the entire range - woops. I've done a pervious post on the range here if you want to read my initial swooning.

Mad Alice is a beautiful purple based polish which also houses glitter flecks that come in different colours and sizes. It manages to compliment the deep plum base, whilst also adding that little somethin' which really makes my nails stand out from the crowd. I also think that this combination has a very salon-esque finish, which is great for when your after a very sleek and polished look. This type of manicure also usually attracts a lot of attention, which is a godsend when your trying to distract from a certain feature - aka my horrendous skin at the moment! - More about that in a later post...

Apologises for the poor quality photos! Note to self: Don't attempt to take photos in the evening...

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Should I, Shouldn't I? - Tattoo Indecisiveness

So, today's post is pretty random but after coming across a really unusual tattoo on tumblr, I just knew that I had to share it! I've been two minds about getting a tattoo for years, yes years! Since school I can remember drawing them on my hands, stencilling potential designs on a notepad and hell I've even been to one or two tattoo parlours. But, something always stops me from just going for it. Maybe it's how popular tattoos have become or maybe it's the fact that they are so permanent, or just maybe it's because I am the most indecisive person ever? - see I can't even decide on that!

Either way I panic that I'll regret it after one year day and then well...I'll be stuck with it. I also worry about where on earth I would get one done?! As I'm such a small person, I wouldn't want anything too big and overpowering, so in my head I've always imagined a really small, simple black ink design. Usually these types of tattoos look lovely on the wrist, behind the ear, on the shoulder or even on a foot. But, I also want it to be somewhere that isn't too noticeable, particularly when considering the field of work that I'm wanting to have a career in. Hummmm... Any advice would be great! 

In the meantime this is the tattoo I was talking about, although I'm not too hot on colour tattoos or the design if I'm truthful, I think the technique that has been used is absolutely stunning. I really love unusual tattoos, particularly the ones that stray away from the bog standard template design that everyone seems to have. Yes I'm talking, anchors, stars, feathers, the infinity design etc. (I don't mean to offend anyone who has one of those designs, but you must know what I mean, right?) However, when thinking about what design I would personally like...well that's an entirely different indecisive dilemma.

Maybe I'm just not cut out for this tattoo lark after all...

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Product Let Down - bareMinerals Mascara

I really dislike this product!

The brush, the formula and even the smell, in my opinion it's definitely one to pass on. I had high hopes for this 'flawless definition volumizing' mascara, particularly as it's more expensive (£16.00 to be precise) than your average drug store mascaras - which are way better might I add, Maybelline is a particular favourite brand of mine - however, it's possibility the worst mascara I have ever tried.

Although this product is marketed as giving the lashes 'ultimate volume and perfect definition', it is really difficult to apply, it makes my lashes look clumpy if I attempt to add more than one coat and the brush is far too big to coat bottom lashes lightly. Think spider lashes and you wouldn't be far off unfortunately! It also really stings your eyes if you accidentally get some product in them when removing it.

The only positive thing I can say about this product is that I like the packaging, as its housed within a sleek, half matte/half shiny stylish looking tube. I intend to keep this product as an emergency mascara, but that's the only real use I can find for it.

bareMinerals...what you playing at?!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

The Feather Ring - Pandora A/W 2013 Collection

Well, it was my 23rd birthday last month and for once in my life I couldn't think of what I wanted to get as my main present! Crazy I know, but this year I wanted something different, sentimental and possibly something that I could wear - excluding makeup and clothes of course...there just necessities in life, right? So, I decided on a ring. A Pandora ring to be precise. My mum purchased a beautiful pearl ring from there last year and I've secretly been eyeing it up ever since. However, as I wanted a more understated ring that I could wear on a regular basis, I decided to browse for a ring with a more subtle and sturdy design.

The whole collection is absolutely gorgeous and it literally took me forever to decide which one to choose. I'm such an indecisive person at the best of times, even more so when shopping for jewellery! However, once I saw it I knew that it was perfect for me - even if did think it was a leaf at first, whoops. Its actually in the design of a feather and unsurprisingly it is part of the new feather collection, which has additional matching jewellery including, earrings, a bracelet/charm and a necklace - which is already on my Christmas wish list...shhhh!

I love how unusual this ring is, from the original design, to the sheer amount of sparkle that the cubic zirconia gemstones create. I also really like the fact that this ring is inspired by something that can have numerous connotations. For example, I personally find the possibility of guardian angels fascinating and therefore wearing a feather makes me feel protected, almost as if I am being watched over. However, that's just what I take from the ring, it's each to their own I suppose.  I've linked the ring here and as the feather collection is a new release - it was launched as part of the new Autumn/Winter 2013 collection - I imagine it will be available for a long time. I hope so anyway!