Sunday, 10 November 2013

karmin g3 salon pro hair styling iron

| karmin g3 salon pro hair styling iron in pink* - $189.95 online |
When this arrived on my door step i almost cried. i have wanted a set of pink straighteners for as long as i can remember, but whilst there is still life in my ghd's i had no reason to get a new set.

what drew me to this set was the list of claims that come alongside them.  the straighteners come in 3 different colours (just in case pink isn't your thing) and claim to use negative ions and infrared heat to remove static and leave you with silky, shiny hair. they also use ion field technology which seals in natural oils.

i have to admit a lot of the problems these straighteners claim to help aren't things i have to face on a daily basis... however whilst using these my hair was very shiny and nice feeling? so that can only be a good thing!

will these replace my ghd's? i'm not so sure. but they are the perfect size to chuck in my bag for a trip away and i know i'll get use out of them. the free shipping from the website it a massive plus (especially as i believe they are sent over from the usa) but it is a bit of a pain having an international plug (you can pick up an adapter on the cheap, or you may have one lying around somewhere.) overall i'd say it's a nice, compact sized tool in a pretty colour. a nice addition to any make-up table.

have you tried karmin? what are your favourite straighteners?

big ♥,

Saturday, 9 November 2013

so...? fragrances

| so...? sexy*, so...? eternal*, so...? rock me* fragrances |

so..? fragrances always remind me of my early teenage years. after pe it was this product which formed the overwhelming scent in the changing rooms. i was curious to see if a product i had loved so much all those years ago could still capture my heart and i have to say i was pleasantly surprised!

'so...? sexy' was a scent that i had previously tried a sample of and it's right up my street. it smells sweet and floral but with a little hint of adult. it really makes so...? seem less childish and is something i am happy to chuck in my handbag and carry around.

'so...? eternal' was the only eau do toilette i tried and it's not my favourite.... the initial scent smelt almost medicinal. this did fade but the scent it left was still not one i would reach for. it was slightly less sweet than i would usually go for but was still very overwhelmingly floral. a bit of a disappointment for me but may be better suited to someone else.

'so...? rock me' has to be my favourite of the three! it's a very fruity scent and nice and sweet without being overpowering. the smell just screams summer and it the perfect way to bring me out of my winter gloom!

prices vary depending on where you are buying from but in general they are cheap as chips!

have you tried so...? fragrances before? which is your favourite?

big ♥,

Friday, 8 November 2013

the university curse

somehow i just can't seem to keep up with this blogging malarky when i hit university shores. as usual i've managed to get myself involved in everything and that means very little free time. with the hundreds of amazing products i've got to show on currently on backlog i'm going to have to give myself a bit of a kick up the bum and get back into it all! i may not be posting as regularly as i did over the summer but hopefully it'll be better than once every two months!

big ♥,

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

the body shop vitamin e cool bb cream

| the body shop vitamin e cool bb cream*- £10 the body shop |
i'm clearly going through a bb phase at the moment. i've gone from barely touching them to wearing them on a daily basis! the formula of this product is quite thin making it a fairly light coverage and very easy to blemd. it's very moisturising, as would be expected with all that vitamin e! the dewey finish is something that i am more partial to in the warmer months so i'm not sure how much i will use this in the winter. however with a good powder it can be transformed easily, so you never know! i also found that a little goes a long way, so don't make the same mistake as me and try to put a fistful on your face at once!  the body shop always seem to have offers or discount codes floating about so there is bound be an opportunity to try this for a little cheaper!

what is your favourite bb cream?

big ♥,

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

5 products i'm glad i didn't purchase

as a blogger it's easily to get caught up in product hype. i have a tendency to rush out and buy products that everyone is talking about without really thinking about whether i will actually use them. every now and again i resist and my life continues on... so i thought i'd reflect on the few products that i'm glad i never picked up.
1) sleek pout paints
a great idea. i'm sure i would have had great fun with them for a few weeks but i get bored easily. i like being able to get my make-up done as quickly as possible and i know i would never end up using them just to save time in the mornings.

2) naked 2 palette
i have to admit i'm still so tempted to buy this... but i know if i do i'll never use it. i have so many eyeshadows in my drawers that i don't get anywhere near enough use out of and a lot of them are very similar shades to this palette. someone please stop me!

3) chanel nail polish
i've lusted after many a chanel nail varnish but after talking to a few people about them all i've heard is how badly they chip! most nail varnishes chip pretty quickly on me anyway, so i can only imagine how quickly these would work their way off my nails!

4) nyx glitter palettes
these always look so beautiful but i only ever seem to wear glitter for fancy dress now days. i've also read a few reviews that said the glitter comes off with the top layer which is a little disappointing to hear. 

5) caudalie beauty elixir
some people claim this is their holy grail product and others have said it's nothing more than a flavoured water. i have a feeling i wouldn't be a fan on the scent and i wouldn't be too happy to spend all that money if it didn't end up working for me. i have quite a few other facial sprays in my collection at the moment so it's probably best i never bought it!

what products are you glad you didn't buy?

big ♥,

Monday, 16 September 2013

lush think pink bath ballistic & pop in the bath bubble bar

think pink bath ballistic £2.50 , pop in the bath bubble bar £2.95 - lush |
i was never big on lush. to me it always felt overpriced and as i only have a shower at uni i never really get a chance to sample the bath products but these two definitely caught my eye! as i'm heading back to uni today it felt like the perfect time to reflect on two of my most recent favourite bath time products.

the think pink bath ballistic is the most gorgeous colour. the pastel pink shade transforms in a bright pink in the bath. i looks almost like liquid raspberry jelly! the lavender scent is hardly detectable. instead i can smell what i imagine to be the tonka, with hints of vanilla. placing this in your bath is the cosmetics equivalents of getting a great big hug and for £2.50 i have a feeling i'll be picking it up again!

the pop in the bath bubble bar was something that intrigued me. i've heard so much about the bubble bars and i thought it was finally time to see how one of them works. this particular one is made in four random colour combinations so you can pick up a different colour based on how you feel. the fragrance is sweet and citrus-y, which is released when you crumble it under running bath water. it works just like a normal bubble bath creating mountains of bubbles, obviously varying dependant on how much you put it. mine lasted me a good 5/6 baths which works out at about 50p per bath. worth every penny!

what do you think about lush? anything you would recommend?

big ♥,

Sunday, 15 September 2013

sampling samples #6

pantene pro-v repair and protect shampoo
i've only used this a couple of times so i can't make many claims about it. it leaves my hair feeling clean and not heavy. i haven't seen any massive differences in my hair, but likewise it hasn't had any adverse effects.

une skin-glow foundation
i can only describe this product as okay. it's a light/medium coverage foundation with a dewey finish and a bit of a funny smell. i didn't mind wearing it but i wouldn't go and pick it up any time soon.

so...? sexy*
these fragrances remind me of my childhood. it smells sweet and floral, yet adult at the same time. i was surprised to find this is a fragrance that i'm actually looking to repurchase. it's cheap as chips and the full size bottle is the perfect size to pop in my handbag.

so...? sensual*
i'm less keen on this fragrance than the other. it's not really floral but definitely not musky. i just can't pick up the notes in at all. its pleasant but not a fragrance i would typically pick. definitely more suited for the evenings i think.

l'oreal nude magique
when i first saw this i didn't get it. how could it be nude and still give me coverage? but this may be my favourite skin product i have used for a long time! obviously i have only used one sample but i am going straight out, right this very second to go and purchase it. even my favourite foundations don't make my skin look this nice alone. it is light and feels almost like second skin. i would say the product is a strong medium coverage and it's something i would be happy to wear with nothing else on my face. (and i don't say that about many products!)

l'oreal lumi magique
i'm impressed l'oreal! i think sometimes i forget how much i love it as a brand. this foundation is definitely a heavy to medium coverage but it doesn't feel that way on the skin. it made my skin look completely flawless and i am so tempted to go out and buy this! i'm just not sure i can justify picking up both this and the nude maqique!

cargo lipgloss* 
when i saw this in my glossy box i was instantly drawn to it. the shade serengetti is a dark peachy pink with a subtle shimmer running through it. it applies fairly sheer, with a very slight colour pay off. the formula is a lot more sticky than i would hope for, but it looks amazing over a nude lipstick. would i pay £10 for a full size however? i doubt it.

big ♥,

Saturday, 14 September 2013

shake shack

a few weekends a go i had the pleasure of heading up to covent garden to get my phone fixed (fyi it's still broken and i hate you apple.) whilst i waited for my appointment my lovely friend holly and i decided to pop over to shake shack for a spot of lunch. it seems to be the go to place for every blogger at the moment and i can definitely see what all the hype is about.

hollie opted for a shackburger and a chocolate milkshake, whilst i had a shackago dog, loaded with all variety of toppings, as well as a milkshake of the peanut butter variety. then obviously we had to share some cheesey chips! the food was wonderfully fresh and tasted absolutely delicious. the milkshakes flavour wasn't too overpowering but looking back on it i wish i'd added a bit of caramel to mine! next time i pop up to london i'll have to get myself one of those shackburgers, they look amazing!

on an entirely unrelated note how amazing is this van! it was selling hair accessories just outside the centre in covent garden. i can't help but imagine how amazing it would be to travel around in one of these, stopping at some beautiful places along the way!

big ♥,

Friday, 13 September 2013

avon shine attract lipstick

| avon shine attract lipstick in happy pink*- £9 online/via rep |
the idea behind these is a clear one. offering you the benefits of a balm and lipstick, separately but yet still as one product. it immediately caught my eye and i knew i had to try it!

the shade of this is gorgeous. if offers a sheer wash of colour but still with plenty of pigment and shine. it is shimmery as oppose to glittering increasing the shine element of the product. in terms of the consistency of the product, that is great too. it is creamy and moisturising (mostly due to the balm component) but i find application can be very difficult. as the actually lipstick shade is in the centre of the product it can be difficult to manoeuvre the product all over your lips.

despite my love for the shade and formula, the application difficulties are a massive downside for me and it makes me reach for it far less. i wouldn't necessarily purchase any more for myself but if you can see past the application its definitely worth taking a look at.

big ♥,

Thursday, 12 September 2013

l'oreal super liner

| l'oreal super liner in black vinyl- £6.99 boots/superdrug |

when anyone asks me to recommend a liquid eyeliner it is an easy choice. i have a few different brands in my collection but this beauty from l'oreal is always the winner. 

the nib is quite long and fairly thin, making it easy to apply and create a nice shape. the colour is a highly, pigmented true black which provides you with a strong frame for your eyes. Perfect to complete any make-up look, particularly in the evenings. in addition to this i think the best thing about the product is that once on, it truly does not budge! on the odd occasion when i fall asleep with my make-up still on (*slaps self on the wrist*) it is still entirely intact when i wake up! you can't really hope for anything more than that!

have you got a product you always recommend?

big ♥,

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

je sourire #3

i've loved ellie goulding since i first discovered her four years ago. when she released her first album i was in love and it was definitely the soundtrack to my 2011 summer. when her latest album was released i was less excited. it wasn't songs i enjoyed as much, but the release of this song has reignited my love! (pun totally intended) and not only that she looks absolutely amazing! i can't help but want everything she ever wears!

who is your favourite artist right now? i'm currently in the process of revamping my ipod so any song recommendations are welcome!

big ♥,

Monday, 9 September 2013

cooking at uni

the stereotypical student diet is a wonderful mix of super noodles and take-away pizza but in reality it can be so different. i saw so many students come to uni with such appalling cooking skills, that all they were qualified to cook were ready meals. cooking for yourself (or others) can be so simple once you know how. it's just a case of preparation and knowledge.

i like to think i eat fairly healthy at university. obviously i have my off days. i love nothing more than a pizza after a night out and i am partial to the odd meal deal but in general i can't wait to get home and eat a salad after a long day of lectures!

i found in my first term that i was more tempted to reach for convenience foods because i didn't have time to cook properly. so as the year went on i found that by preparing meals when i have a few hours free i was able to freeze them to make quick meals. by having vegetables pre-cut, or meals pre-portioned i can food quickly and easily without reaching for a take away menu.

as well as not having time it can be easy to get stuck in a rut when it comes to food, so i took a big book full of all my favourite recipes from home. that way when i was feeling a bit homesick i just gave my mum a ring and cooked up a big plate of something homely and warming. exactly what i needed!

there truly is no replacement for good, home cooked food (not even a dominoes!) and i can't wait to get back and try out all my new recipes!

do you like to cook? what sort of food do you eat on a daily basis?

big ♥,

ps, fear not i'll be returning to my usual postings tomorrow! it's only one week until i head off to uni and i can hardly contain my excitement! writing these posts certainly didn't help my yearning to get back!

Sunday, 8 September 2013

decorating your uni room

you room at university truly is a home away from home. i spent a lot of time making my room my own  last year (see this post) but i did it relatively cheaply with only a few extra elements to me it 'me'. so for all of you planning your i have a few suggestions to make it your own.

throws and pillows
a lot of halls of residence don't have a living space within the flat so if you're like me you're bed may end up being used as a sofa instead! you can make it a lot more comfortable by bringing some pretty pillows and a nice warm blanket (you'll be thankful for it when you're feeling ill!)

photos add a completely personal touch to any room. you can also have great fun finding a unique way to display them. some people put them on their pin board. others use them to create a boarder. i displayed mine in a sort of mural on my wall and also had some in a frame on my desk, for me its a case of the more the better and i've already ordered 50 more prints for this year!

whether it's a china figurine from your gap year or a childhood money box they not only remind you of home but can also be a great conversation starter. select them carefully as too many can cause clutter.

pretty storage
practical can and should be pretty. storage is a necessity in any student room and if you can make it look nice its a bonus! ikea do some great simple boxes but i've also found some great pieces in places like matalan. 

everyone loves getting flowers so instead of waiting for a secret admirer to send me some my mum send me to uni with a baby money plant to nurture. her mum had done the same for her when she moved into her first house so it was a natural progression. a plant makes the room feel so much more fresh and alive, plus i'm sure there is some positive feng shui vibes attached to it somewhere.

the lighting in halls of residence can be quite harsh and i found that having a light by my bed was really useful. next yeah i also plan to take one for my desk for those late night revision sessions. if your looking for something a little more decorative i definitely recommend fairy lights! you can get them really cheap (sometimes they have them in the pound shop!) and with so many different varieties there is bound to be some you like.

how do you decorate your room? 

big ♥,

Saturday, 7 September 2013

my top tips for freshers

1. learn some basic cooking skillsi've covered this in my 'cooking at uni' (on the way soon) post but please god just do it.  a student budget cannot accommodate you eating ready meals and take-away pizzas every night! (and even if you can you're better off saving it for more interesting things!)

2. get involved in something. i made some of my best friends through clubs and societies. these are the elements of my uni life that have made my uni experience! i've loved getting involved in the volunteering and the sports teams. it really is all about throwing yourself in and getting involved in a new activity or an old favourite!

3. register with a gp asap. you will be glad you did when you feel so ill you can hardly pull yourself out of bed but can't go see a dr. filling in the forms can take a bit of time so have your vaccination history and you nhs number handy. if you get it done straight away it's one less thing to think about!

4. bring biscuits. biscuits and tea were my tools for luring my flatmates out of their bedrooms on the first day. no one can say no to a nice biscuit and it's a homely touch. also great for grabbing in the first few days when you're in a hurry!

5. wedge your door open. its so much more welcoming. people will feel like they can come and say hi and introduce themselves. i also found that this sets you up for the rest of the year. people soon realised that when my door was open people were welcome to pop, but when it was closed i was busy and didn't want to be disturbed. i got so much more work done this way.

6. go to the library. i found that during the exam period i couldn't get any work done in my flat. it is so easy to get distracted! so instead i would head over to the library or the computer building. once you're there it seems almost too much of an effort to walk home, forcing you to work!

7. don't sweat it. at most uni's your first year doesn't even count so missing the odd lecture isn't a big deal. make an effort but enjoy yourself. settle in, get to know your surroundings and throw yourself in. you'll get less time to do so as the years go on!

have you got any tips form your time in uni? 

big ♥,

Friday, 6 September 2013

slimming at uni

we've all heard of the dreaded fresher fifteen. well i gained the fresher twenty eight. the first term i ate badly, drank too much and managed to break my ankle, which resulted in no exercise. i found that in my first year despite my best efforts to eat well it was really difficult to shift any of my excess weight. this summer i've made a conscious effort to loose as much as i can and although i'm almost 1 stone down it isn't enough. this year i am determined to loose all the weight i gained and then maintain it in a healthy way. i came up with a list of ideas to do that last year in this post. but its time to rethink my ideas and make an action plan!

keep going to slimming world
last year i didn't really have the finances in place to do this as obviously you can weigh yourself at home, but i found that i just didn't stick to it. i feel an element of pressure when i go to get weighed at group and that is what i need to keep me on track!

join the gym
last year i convinced myself that i could save some pennies and just go running... i didn't go. i can't stand the rain and cold so this year i am signing up to the gym and i want to go at least 3 times a week as well as swimming on the odd occasion.

exercise with friends
i realised that if i organise to meet up with a friend then i can't really get out of exercising. it also helps to have a bit of support and even a little bit of healthy competition!

drink less
this is the main thing i need to do this year. as a first year i went out a minimum of 4 days a week and towards the end of the year this was closer to 6 or 7 days! i need to find healthier alternatives to the drinks i like and then the rest of the time cut back a bit. i'm hoping this will be easier with my increased workload!

have you tried to loose weight whilst at uni? any tips?

big ♥,

Thursday, 5 September 2013

what to take to uni

like every other student when i found out i'd got into university i went off searching for a list of 'what to take to university'. a lot of lists are a bit overwhelming so here is a basic run-down of what i took (give or take a few items!)

- clothes- don't pack everything. you'll probably have less room than you do at home and you're bound to pick up so stash! so think about what you really need.
- extension leads
- stationary, notebooks and folders
- printer, with ink and paper
- passport, copies of passport photos and copies of important documents inc. student finance and exam certificates
- space saving storage- plastci shelving, stackable boxes etc
- cutlery, plates, pots and pans, plus everything else you need for your kitchen- this is down to personal preference and the level of cooking you will be doing
- fancy dress- you will use it
- bedding- duvet, pillows, sheets (some may be supplied)
- alarm clock
- laundry basket
- door stop- propping your door open is the best thing you can do!
- clothes horse
- desk lamp (may be supplied)
- toiletries- don't go mental with the products!
- envelopes and stamps- you won't think you'll need will
- NHS medical number and vaccination history- you need this to sign up to your dr at uni and it's a pain to find later!
- small first aid kit- basic items like plasters and paracetamol as a minimum
- needle and thread- for sewing buttons back on etc
- weekend bag- for when you want to pop home/visit friends
- clothes hangers
- little whiteboard- i stuck mine on my room door and it provided endless hours of fun
- bluetack- you'll find things you want to stick up!
- usb pen- don't always rely on email to transfer your documents!
- pack of cards- when you want to play ring of fire no one ever seems to have any!

there are a few other bits and bobs that are personal to every person and certain uni's will provide some bits, so definitely check with them! these were just things that i take with me.

can any of you think of anything i've missed off?

big ♥,

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

budgeting/saving at uni

as a student going into my second year at university i like to think i have a good idea of how to budget as a student. my student loan doesn't even cover my rent so i've really had to learn to scrimp and save. everyone has their own areas they can make savings but here are a few tips and tricks i have picked up in my first year.

1. take food with you
one of my biggest pitfalls is buying myself food when i'm out and about at uni. whether its a sandwich at lunch time or a coffee on the way to lectures it all adds up! so i bought myself some lunch boxes and snack pots from the £1 shop and i make sure to always have something in my bag, especially when i head off to library!

2. make a spending diary
this is something i have been doing more recently and it really helps you see where all of your money is going. i realised that i was spending money on a bottle of water every time i went out, so now i keep one in my bag at all times.

3. think before you buy
do you really need it? this is the first question i ask myself before i purchase anything. can i live without it? if they answer is yes, then don't buy it. i ask the same question before i go out for dinner or a night out. have i been out too much that week? can i afford to go out again? it's all about thinking before you do anything.

4. use your student discount (or any discount for that matter)
if you must buy something ALWAYS ask if they do a student discount. a lot of places do and those who don't can sometimes recommend another way to get some discounts. it never hurts to ask!

5. shop around
it took me 3 terms to work out that tesco was the cheapest supermarket by the university, needless to say i hadn't been using it. i've now worked out that doing an asda delivery every couple of weeks is even cheaper! if you want to save even more money go to a  local market nearby and pick up all of your fresh fruit and veg here, it works out so much cheaper than any supermarket! ninety percent of the time if you're buying something you can get it cheaper elsewhere, so make sure you look around!

6. look at what you have
the amount of times i see people buy a new pair of jeans when they have another 10 pairs at home! don't buy things you already have! if you have 40 tops but no skirts then don't go buying another 5 t'shirts. in the same way think about what you have that will go with each piece. there is no point in buying something that you can't actually wear. this applies to anything you buy, not just clothes! think before you go to the till.

7. make sacrifices
sometimes you just have to go without. when i look back at all the things i wanted to do or have wanted to buy over the past year none of it was more important than needing money for food. it sucks, but don't think of it as going without. Think of it more as postponing until the future.

big ♥,

ps as most freshers will be heading off over the next few weeks i'm hoping to get up a few posts about my uni experience and my advice to anyone heading off. if you have anything you'd like me to cover please send me an email or leave a comment below :)

Monday, 2 September 2013

vaseline pro derma deodorant

| vaseline deodorant* in active fresh, aloe fresh, double invisible and derma beauty £1.86 |
i don't normally talk about deodorant... for a lot of brands it is a case of, you've tried one you've tried them all. i'd never picked up a vaseline on before and i have to say i have been impressed. with so many variations in the range i've been using different deodorants dependant on my mood. the double invisible is one i lean towards on a hot day or a night out, can't be dealing with unsightly marks on my clothes! the derma blend deodorant has the most gorgeous floral scent and is great for longer days at work when i know i'm going to have to work hard! the active fresh scent reminds me of going to the gym or doing a workout mainly because its the one i reach towards for those moments. the scent really lends itself to this. as for the aloe fresh scent it is a great everyday scent which i tend to keep hidden in my handbag for those emergency moments.  all the deodorants claim to last for a minimum of 24hrs and contain 0% alcohol. with those claims for less than £2 you can't really say no!

am i the only one who switches up my deodorant?

big ♥,

Sunday, 1 September 2013

sampling samples #5 | holiday edition

to save a bit of space in my suitcase i took a few samples with me on holiday. a cleanser, sunscreen, body butter and primer found it's way into my suitcase. everything you need for a holiday in the sun!

coola mineral sunscreen*
this sunscreen looked terrifying when i first went to put it on. after reading the small print i discovered it was marketed as a tinted moisturiser as well as a sunscreen. but to be honest i found the product too sheer to be a tinted moisturiser and lacking in sufficient spf to be a sunscreen. the formula is great but it is seriously lacking in other vital areas. slightly disappointing

vinchy normaderm tri-activ cleanser*
i was instantly drawn to this as it can be used in three different ways. you can apply it either as a cleanser, mask or scrub demanding on what you're looking for. its free from parabens and a selection of other nasty bits making it great for sensitive skin. it contains salicylic acid to revitalise the skin and the little exfoliating beads give the skin a good polish without being harsh, even when using it as a mask. it smells amazing and the clay in the formula leaves the skin feel soft and well looked after but not heavy. i'm impressed vinchy.

alison claire mango body butter*
i used this for a bit of indulgent moisturising after a day in the sun. i much prefer products with a pump as they are just so much more hygienic. the product is thick but thins upon application, making it easier to massage in. it sinks into the skin straight away leaving it moisturised as opposed to sticky. the scent is fresh but is not one i am particularly  fond of. the product is over 70% organic and i would presume that is why the scent is not quite as sugary sweet as i would hope for. overall a nice product but not one i would repurchase simply because of the smell.

murad skin perfecting primer- dewy finish*
this primer is unlike any other i have tried before. not only is it coloured it is very thin, almost like a tinted moisturiser. in fact i feel like this producted worked more as a moisturiser than a primer. it did very little to make my make-up stay on longer and i didn't feel like my complexion had any more of a dewy finish than normal. however this product did help my make-up go on smoothly, but i'm not sure i could face the price tag for only one benefit.

its such a shame that i wasn't impressed by many of my samples this time round but that's what they are for i guess! saving me a lot of money in the long run!

big ♥,

Saturday, 31 August 2013

collection cream puff

| (l-r) collection cream puff in angel delight, fairy cake, cotton candy, powder puff £2.99- superdrug/boots |
during my time in sixth form these were my most loved lip products by a clear mile! i would wear them day in day out and owned the whole set in less than a week! i've always been a fan of a matte lip and these are the perfect penny pinching way to achieve it.

the formula of the product is wonderful. it's so smooth and easy to apply. i've never known a product to feel so great on my lips. it's moisturising but not in an obvious way. the finish it leaves on my lips is beautiful, it's matte but still with a slight sheen giving it a natural looking finish. the pigmentation is amazing but it can be lessened with a little blotting making it great for even the most nervous make-up user.

i am beyond excited to have rediscovered these lip creams. with most lip products i'm too scared to use it too much in case i run out, but since these only cost £2.99 i can use them to my heart's content! if only there were some more shades to collect! get on it collection!

have you tried the cream puffs? do you like matte lips?

big ♥,

Friday, 30 August 2013

my favourite summer polishes

i know the whole idea of this sort of post is that i'm meant to give a few of my favourite polishes of the season but i just couldn't pick! with that in mind here is my selection of summer polishes for anyone looking to add a few shades to their collection.

| (l-r) models own indian ocean & hedonist, barry m mint green, lemon ice cream & peach melba, headline colours catwalk* |
indian ocean is unlike any other polish i own. the effect it gives on your nails is like a beautiful beach from a postcard, shimmering as you move your hand. the pastel polishes are my perfect spring to summer polish. they look so fresh and i like to wear them with a different colour on each finger when i'm feeling a bit more adventurous!

as for hedonist and catwalk they are both variations on the same shade. for me catwalk is a more everyday colour as it it slightly more muted, whilst hedonist is perfect for those big nights out. it glows under the club lights and looks amazing! i've never had so many people compliment me on my nails!

| (l-r) primark neons set,  orly rock on red*, mua shade 9, nails inc with instyle bluebell, ciate mistress* |
these polishes from primark were an utter bargain! they actually come as a set of four but i'm not a fan of the green shade. they need a few coats but give a gorgeous neon colour! not bad for 50p each. the orly shade is a gorgeous bright pink, which although similar to a few other shades i own is the one i always reach for.

the mua blue is slightly muted which i love. although not the greatest formula ever i like this for one day wear. its especially with a matte top coat. the shade from nails inc is so unique. i've never seen a shade like it and it is a staple for me in the spring to summer transition, one that i am always excited to rediscover. i love the bottles from ciate!this shade, mistress, is the perfect orange toned red. i love to pair it with a black outfit. it really stands out and makes a statement with your nails.

so it would seem i have a bit of a thing for neons and pastels... although i tend to wear a lot of these more in the summer i do think they are shades perfect for all year round, i just have to choose the appropriate moment!

what are your favourite polishes at the moment?

big ♥,

Thursday, 29 August 2013

vivo shimmer blocks

| (l-r) vivo shimmer bronzer block* in 'fully loaded shimmer' and blusher block* in 'shimmer and spice' £3.99- tesco/online |

i've never been a massive fan of shimmer bricks. whilst everyone else seemed to love the i just never really understood the point. but when i swatched these bad boys i found i could not have been more wrong!

the shades that you get from swirling the colours together in the pan is just beautiful. the colours have such depth and are definitely shimmery as opposed to glittery. these can be worn with all the shade swirled together (as seen above) or one section separately but i found that logistically far more difficult! the colours are highly pigmented and are easy to apply and blend, with minimal fallout. at only £3.99 they are definitely worth a look on your next trip into tesco!

do you like shimmer blocks? any i should check out?

big ♥,

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

current favourites

i don't do monthly favourites simply because i don't tend to switch around my products often enough to warrant doing them. but every now and again i find a nice selection of new bits and bobs to share. most of these i took away with me on holiday 

the sleek blusher palette is one i had lusted after for such a long time! the shades in the 'lace' palette are just exquisite and suit my complexion perfectly. they are also pocket sized, so you get 3 shades in easily manageable sizes which are still small enough to chuck into a travel bag. the mua pro-brow kit* was one i grabbed from my collection in a rush as i packed. i had never got much use out of it but it has been a godsend this month. there is a mix of two powder shades alongside a set of tweezers, a brush, a highlighting powder and an eyebrow gel. my ever changing hair colour means that i need to have access to a variety of different powder shades and i found that through mixing the two shades i was able to get a pretty good colour for my brows. as always i had my trusty mascara by my side and this month i've been trying out the nyc showtime mascara. i can honestly say this may be my favourite mascara ever. it does everything i have ever wanted in a mascara and it is cheap as chips! i know i don't need to buy any more mascaras but this is a definite repurchase!

the heat in spain can lead to you feeling a little dishevelled and i found a couple of products were super helpful in making me feel fresh and clean again! the anatomicals 'spray misty for me' facial spritz* contains a variety of fancy ingredients from peppermint, to aloe and witch hazel making it wonderfully soothing on the skin. a part of me wants to shrug it off as fancy water but i know that water would not give anywhere near the same effect! the perfect flying companion  in my eyes. as for my hair, i used a variety of products but these are two that have stayed in my routine upon my return. i've always loved batiste dry shampoo but i'd never tried this brown one. i love it not only because it refreshes my hair but it also hides my ever growing roots effectively! i also used the aussie 'take the heat' leave in cream. i alternated this product with my aussie leave in conditioner, putting it in my hair before i sat in the sun. my hair was definitely far less dry and brittle than on other holidays and i am sure it was down to those products!

as for skin care i kept it to a bare minimum when i was on holiday keeping up with my usual bioderma and simple day cream combo but you can't go out in the spanish heat without a good facial spf. i started off using up a couple of samples i got in glossy boxes but when i ran out of those i picked up this nivea sun cream in the local supermarket. it feels far lighter than a sun cream you would use for your body and the spf 50 is definitely reassuring. i've actually continued using it in the uk and it is perfect to pop on before your make-up. i bought the simple eye cream around the same time as my day cream but never got around to using it. its far better than i had imagined, working beautifully in conjunction with my day cream. it's gentle and the perfect consistency, making it easy to apply. i can't decide if i like it as much as the balance me eye cream i was using before but it is definitely making my skin below my eyes look nice so who am i to complain!

have you got any favourite products at the moment?

big ♥,

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

mac snob lipstick

| mac satin lipstick in snob- £15.00 |

my uncle always gets it right when it comes to presents. he saw this was on my wishlist and picked it up for me last xmas. a light, barbie pink is one lipstick i didn't have in my collection and i'd heard so much about snob in the blogosphere. really it was hard to resist.

i have to be honest and say that it's not a lipstick i will wear everyday. the blue and lilac undertones make it a very cooling shade that is far more flattering to me when i am less tanned. however, the formula of the lipstick is wonderful. although not moisturising it doesn't dry the lips out further and glides on effortlessly. i prefer to blot the lipstick slightly to give it a more muted shade on the lips and even despite this it lasts a good few hours before reapplication is necessary. although it is a great product i can't help but wince at the price, mac lipsticks will definitely have to remain as treats or presents!

have you tried snob? what's your favourite mac lipstick?

big ♥,

Monday, 26 August 2013

my cream blushers

| mua blush perfection in bittersweet* and dolly*, topshop blush in crushed berry , vivo cheeky cream blusher in soft flush* |
it has been the season of the cream blusher. in the hots weather they add the perfect flush of colour without feeling or looking heavy on the skin.

my favourites out of the four have to be my mua blushers. they are so creamy and easy to blend. dolly is a shade i have been reaching for a lot these past few weeks. it is the most natural colour to your cheeks and is almost undetectable once applied. to top it all off they are only £2.99, an utter bargain! these are the perfect cream blushers for someone looking try them for the first time.

the topshop blusher was my first cream blush i ever purchased. it has a cream to powder formula leaving the skin more matte after application. this makes them a great for anyone looking to get into cream blush but fearing the dewey finish it can leave, but does require you to blend quickly or it can become patchy. what i love most about this shade is that you can really blend it out to give a more subtle colour and alternatively you can build it up to do the opposite.

the vivo blusher is very similar in colour to 'dolly' by mua. i would say that it is a few shades darker, making it more useful to me when i have a bit of colour on my face. it's not as creamy as the other three but is still blend-able, you just have to be willing to work a little harder with it. but for the price point it is still a great product.

do you like cream blushers? any you would recommend?

big ♥,

Friday, 23 August 2013

boot fair bargains

| bohoo skater dress- £2 | matalan crochet top- £1 | topshop nautical style top- £2 |
| topshop sequin leggings- £2 | topshop purple denim shorts £2 | primark leather shorts £1 | new look jeggings £2 |

the sunday morning boot fairs are one of my favourite things about coming home. i love going down with my mum a selling some of our old bits and pieces, then mid morning i leave her in charge and go in search of bargains. would you believe i bought these seven items from only 2 stalls! the items are all in near new condition and the dress and jeggings still had their original tags! every single piece fits me perfectly and i can honestly say i have not felt so pleased with a set of items in such a long time! and the best bit... they only came to £10!

do you like boot fairs? what has been your best purchase?

big ♥,

Thursday, 22 August 2013

i'm walking on sunshine

| dress- topshop | crochet waistcoat- local boutique | belt- h&m | sandals- fenicks | earings- topshop |

this post was actually supposed to be one of my typical ootd's with some photos taken by my lovely mother, however they were all awful so i decided i wasn't going to publish it. then i came across this photo and it was so lovely i just couldn't resist sharing it with you! we don't have many pictures of me and my mum, mainly because i hate having my picture taken! i know that sounds mental considering i post pictures of myself on the internet in my spare time but i tend to avoid posting pictures with my face directly visible. anyway i digress... i love this picture and it will have pride of place on my wall next year!

big ♥,

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

gosh cc cream

| gosh cc cream*- £8.99 superdrug |
i had heard very little about cc creams before using these but from what i gather the cc stands for colour correcting. i was sceptical as it really did seem like another attempt by brands to build upon the bb cream where it wasn't really necessary but i have step back and say i may have been wrong. in  fact i took this on holiday to form part of my 'holiday bases' post (on the way in the next week or so) and enjoyed using it so much i just felt it had to have its own post!

the consistency is similar to that of a bb cream or a light foundation. it feels light on the skin, giving a light to medium coverage with moisturising properties. i like the finish of this because it is slightly less dewey than a tinted moisturiser but still leaves you with that 'no make-up' make-up look. as the coverage isn't as high as i would normally wear i tend to pop on a little concealer on blemishes and dark circles. this has fast become my go to face product, (alternating with my trusty mua bb cream of course) and it looks like it'll stay that way til summer fades.

there are six shades available giving you a range, but as i have only tried shades 3/4 i can't really comment on how light the shades go. From what i remember i found myself a good match before i'd seen the sun, so i wouldn't rule this out for pale girls! and it is definitely worth a try if you're a lover of bb creams!

have you tried a cc cream?

big ♥,

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

shopping in spain

| shoes €22 - marbella boutique | rimmel mascara €6- carrefour | bare minerals £39- flight |
| blazer €12.99- stradivarius | denim shirt €19.99- pull & bear |
| pringle tank top €10- market | crop top €4.95- stradivarius | tshirt- €7.95- h&m |
as a student i'm pretty low on funds 90% of the time so i barely ever buy clothes. in fact most of my wardrobe is from 4/5 years ago. i knew i was in desperate need of a few pieces to liven up my wardrobe so i took the opportunity to grab a few bits and bobs. i have to say i am super pleaser with everything i picked up especially my black wedges (i plan on wearing them for this years freshers ball!) i think i picked quite carefully as most of the pieces will go with almost everything in my wardrobe. definitely money well spent!

do you like to pick up pieces on holiday?

big ♥,

Monday, 19 August 2013

pool side reading

every year i take a trip down to the library ans stock up on books to take on holiday. it's a time when i really allow myself to be fully immersed in readign again and renew my love of reading which can often be lacking by the end of the academic year. i really enjoyed alot of the books i picked up so i thought i would share my thoughts on each with you

shutter island- dennis lehane
i still can't quite make my mind up on this book. i wouldn't say i was running around raving about it but i certainly always wanted to read more and see what happened next. the story followed two men as they travel to 'shutter island' to help search for an escaped mental patient but nothing is quite as it seems. i still don't quite know how i feel about the ending but i suppose that's the effect the author wanted the readers to leave with. i'm thinking perhaps watching the film might help me make a final decision on how i really feel about it. saying that i would still recommend this, but it is pretty heavy so be aware.

little bird- camilla way
this was the book i thought i would enjoy the least and it actually ended up being one of my favourites! the story begins when elodie is snatched from her pram as a baby and switches between two time periods following various different characters in their everyday lives. you think you know exactly where this story is going and but the twists and turns still manage to shock. this really is my sort of book and i'd be interested to have a look at some books by the same author.

rivers of london- ben aaronovitch
i think this is my favourite of all the books i picked up. i got it after seeing it on bee's blog and wasn't sure it was really my thing. the synopsis does not do the book justice at all and in fact really gives very little away. it's a nice mix of fantasy and crime set in modern day london. it reminds me a little of the sort of books i used to read as a teenager, although it is most definitely written for adults. probably my most highly recommended of all five.

one day- david nicholls
i broke every book readers golden rule and watched the film before i read this, but i don't feel like this hindered my enjoyment of it at all. if i'm honest i couldn't remember much of the film but as i read it bits did begin to come back. the book follows dexter and emma from university right through, spanning 20 years and the lives they create for themselves. i cried, as every sane person would and found the storyline touching and gripping at the same time.

the great gatsby- f.scott fitzgerald
i'll be honest... i know everyone seems to love the great gatsby but i just couldn't get into this. i read about 50 pages before giving up and starting another book. i do plan to go back to it but i can't help but think it may have been built up too much? does it get better?

what have you been reading lately? what should i add to my library list?

big ♥,
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