Monday, 30 January 2017

Mini Superdrug Haul

I was so stuck on an idea of what to write today for this post I haven't had bloggers block in ages, and it hit me for the first time this year. Anyway, I needed to go to Superdrug to pick up some Dry Shampoo and ended up spending £31 (only paid £24 thanks to student discount being 20%), whoops, which inspired this mini-haul of a post. Who doesn't love a good old drugstore haul?! So here it is, here's what I picked up in Superdrug.

Ignore the awful photography, I missed the one hour window where I actually get decent natural light in my house.

Batiste Dry Shampoo in Sweetie
The only dry shampoo that actually makes my hair look non-greasy.

Maybelline Eraser Eye Concealer
Would I even be a beauty blogger if I hadn't tried this for highlighting the under eyes?

Maybelline The Falsies Mascara
An oldie, but a goodie! I remember this giving me super big lashes back in the day so I'm expecting big things again!

Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation
One of the first foundations I ever purchased and I'm not too sure why I didn't repurchase as I was a massive fan of the finish. I thought a few years later I'd retry it and see if it's still as good.

Rimmel Lasting Finish Foundation
 I can't remember who recommended this, but it's like the full coverage version of the Match Perfection apparently. I'm all about full coverage so I'm praying I've picked up a good shade match.

Real Techniques Miracle Mini Eraser Sponges
I had no intention of buying these. At all. But they were mini. And I spotted them in the queue so naturally they went into my basket. Whoops.

Eyelure Lash Adhesive
I ordered a pair of Ardell Demi wispies and they didn't come with any glue which  as frustrating as all my mini glues had dried up. I intended to buy some Duo but it was sold out so I figured I'd give this one a shot instead.

I really want to do a full face of first impressions video to go along with this post, but I haven't mastered up the YouTube courage yet *tell me how, please!*

Have you guys picked up anything from Superdrug/Boots recently that I need to pick up next time? I'm looking to find a new contour since I've been using the Sleek Contour Kit for as long as I can remember, recommendations appreciated!
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Friday, 27 January 2017

Healthier Alternatives To My Favourite Snacks

Eating healthily can be so hard, especially when the cravings kick in. I've managed to find some healthier alternatives to the things I always crave; crisps, cake & chocolate, and they seem to do the trick!



Yushoi Snapea Rice Sticks

If I am ever craving crisps I will always reach for these guys. They have a higher protein content than normal crisps, and they're also a good source of fibre. I also believe that these are not fried, which makes them a little better than your regular Walkers crisps.

Nakd Bakewell Tart

I am a sucker for a good ol' cake, and Costa's Bakewell Tarts are perhaps one of my favourites. These Nakd bars tasted exactly like a Bakewell Tart, but they're made from fruits and nuts, and have no added nasties in them. They do still have a fairly high sugar content, but its all natural sugars from the fruits. If you don't like the taste of dates then these will take a little getting used to!

Options or Cadburys Highlights Hot Chocolate

A hot chocolate is not quite the same as a bar of Dairy Milk, I hear you, but whenever I am craving a massive slab of chocolate I tend to make myself a hot chocolate, and it generally does the trick. Options have a tonne of different flavours, and I don't really look at calories, but if you do then they're only around 39 calories per sachet! Much less than your average chocolate bar!

75% Plain Dark Chocolate

Also a healthier alternative to your Cadbury's would be to grab some high cocoa content chocolate. It has much more benefits for your body, with the high cocoa content making the chocolate high in antioxidants which helps to flush out some of the nasties in your body. Some believe it can also help to lower blood pressure and help the brain to function better, eat that Dairy Milk!

Sometimes I do just want to grab a packet of Kettle Chips, or treat myself to a slice of cake, and that's completely ok, life is all about balance. But maybe try making some of these swaps if you are eating a whole bar of chocolate a day.
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Monday, 23 January 2017

My Top Health & Fitness Books

I'm an absolute sucker for new health and fitness books, especially if they are written by online influencers. It can be quite overwhelming though deciding which ones are worth the money, so I thought I'd let you guys know about my four favourites!



If you haven't heard of Joe Wicks, aka The Body Coach, you probably have been living under a rock for the last year, or more. He has quite a heavy online presence, but also has a number of books in the Lean in 15 range, as well as a new DVD release. I've only picked up this book, but it honestly contains some of the easiest and tastiest recipes ever. I particularly like the Turkey Meatballs. The book not only contains recipes, but also some at-home High Intensity Interval Training workouts, and is perfect for those who want to, as the title suggests, get lean. 

Strong is the latest addition to my collection, and is by the beautiful influencer Zanna. I started watching Zanna on YouTube because of TheAnnaEdit and I absolutely adore her videos. She has such a beautiful and uplifting spirit, hence why I picked up this book. It's perfect for beginners in the healthy lifestyle world, and it really focuses on the importance of balance and lifting weights. Reading it has given me a much more open and honest outlook on fitness and also shown me a few new exercises. I haven't gotten round to trying out any recipes yet, but as a massive foodie I doubt I will be able to resist much longer.

Another book written by two guys whose mindset I just adore, is Eat Well, Move Better and Feel Awesome. Not only does this book talk about fitness and how to achieve the body you want on the outside, but also about wellness, which is something I believe can get lost in a lot of fitness books. There's a tonne of recipes in the book, I love the fishcake recipe, even if my house did stink of fish for the next week, and a bunch of different workout plans. I would definitely recommend this book if you feel you care more about what's on the outside than what's going on on the inside, as it will completely change your mindset.

Possibly the most overwhelming book I own is this one. It's full of a million and one different exercises, focussing on weighted or bodyweight moves, to help you achieve a toned body. It is split up into sections focussing on each body part, which can make life really easy for people who cannot afford a PT, as you can go to the section you want to work, pick out some moves, and create a routine pretty easily. None of the moves are super challenging so they're pretty easy to get your head around. I tend to just use this when I need to mix up my routines to shake my body up a little.

I hope this has been helpful to those of you who maybe want to achieve a healthier lifestyle this year but are unsure where to start. Let me know if you have any of these books, and what you thought!
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Friday, 20 January 2017

My 5 Holy Grail Makeup Brushes

In a beauty world filled with a million and one different makeup brushes, I think I have found my five holy grail brushes, and also need to buy a new brush holder...


So, Jaclyn Hill was the cause of every single one of these purchases, and although my bank balance is not thanking her, I definitely am. I've always been the biggest Real Techniques fan, and I still am to this day, but these Morphe and Sigma brushes are just something else. They're super soft and I swear my makeup is always on point when I use these, if I do say so myself.



I use the M460 for baking under my contour, as it allows me to get a super sharp and clean line. I used to use a sponge to apply my powder for baking, but this is so much more precise. As for the M438, I use this for highlighter, as it allows a precise application and always blends it into my cheekbones nicely. 


If you're after a big, chunky, *where am I going with this....*, soft buffing brush for your base, the M439 is perfect. A lot of my buffing brushes don't feel soft after you use them for the first time, but this one is still ridiculously soft. I love using it with heavier coverage foundations and almost stippling it into the skin before I then use it to buff the product in. 


I've also discovered my perfect eye blending duo! I've wanted a MAC 217 brush since I first ventured into the realms of Youtube, but after many, many years I still have not bitten the bullet and just bought one. The Sigma E25 is an amazing dupe however, and it's really soft, allowing a flawless blend of eyeshadows. I tend to use this with blending shadows together on the lid, whereas I use the E40 to blend out my transition shade and my crease. 

I cannot rave about Sigma and Morphe brushes enough! I'm dying to try some of the Sigma beauty products, because if they're even half as good as these brushes I'll be very impressed. Let me know if you've tried anything!


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Friday, 13 January 2017

How I Do Train Travel


I hate travelling by train. Especially my long journey from Colchester to Wallington when I visit home. The only train I don't mind is the Eurostar, because the excitement of visiting Paris rather much outweighs the train journey to get there. I thought I'd write a brief post on how I survive my train journeys and make them just a little more bearable. 

- Netflix Downloads + Headphones

Netflix Downloads is possibly the best invention of 2016. It basically means that you can download episodes of your favourite Netflix show to watch when you don't want to use your data. I recently downloaded The Crown to watch on my travels, and I am absolutely in love with it. The set and scenery is just stunning, and the acting is perfection!

- Starbucks

A hot drink is definitely the best way to make your journey a little better. I only get my drinks when I am on my final stretch of my journey as I have the most annoying bladder and always need a wee.  Starbucks Soy Chai Latte is forever my drink of choice, and it helps me forget that I am on a god forsaken Southern train. 

- A Book

 Currently I am reading Me Before You by Jojo Moyes, which I happened to take on my last train journey. I like to always keep a book with me as it's a great way to help take your mind off the journey ahead of you. Not so great for those that get severe travel sickness though.

- Sweets

Sometimes on long journeys when it gets a little stuffy, even I, who doesn't suffer with travel sickness, can get a little nauseous. I always make sure I have a pack of sweets with me or anything sugary really, as it really helps when the sickness kicks in.

- A Calming Roll-On
My mum gave me a small roller ball oil which you rub on your wrists when you're feeling anxious. I don't tend to get anxious about travelling on trains unless I am stuck on the underground for quite some time, in which case I do use one. If you're not a good traveller I highly recommend getting hold of one. They sell them at lots of local health stores, and they're generally called something along the lines of "roller ball aromatherapy oil". 

How do you cope with train travelling?


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Monday, 9 January 2017

Colourpop UK Haul #2 + International Shipping

As president of my University's Makeup Society I decided to do a massive group order so that all my members could order stuff and we could split the cost of customs as it'd have been much cheaper. Our order came to around £200 and we didn't get charged any customs which was really lucky, as I don't know anyone else who has ordered from Colourpop and NOT been charged!

Here's what I picked up.


Persuade Me Lippie Stix Set, A Lippie Stix in Silk, Creme Gel Colour in Over Board and Ultra Matte Lip in Embellish. I'd never tried any of the Lippie Stix before but I love the Ultra Matte's so thought I'd give these guys a try, and every single colour in the set was beautiful! From Top to Bottom the colours are: Silk, Ziggie, Daydream, Le Freak, Goldie, Hotline and Upside Down.


 Below are swatches of everything I picked up, starting from the top with my Creme Gel Colour and below my Ultra Matte, followed by all the Lippie Stix. The swatch of the Creme Gel Colour really doesn't show up which is annoying but it's a shimmery dark chocolate bronze colour, which I bought to use over the festive period. 


Top to Bottom: Over Board, Embellish, Silk, Ziggie, Daydream, Le Freak, Goldie, Hotline, Upside Down

I have to say my absolute favourite is Ziggie, it's such a beautiful terracotta colour, and nothing like any I already own. But all the colours are super wearable, however I doubt I'd wear Upside Down on it's own as it's a very pale peachy shade. Hotline is a gorgeous brown toned nude, and Goldie described as a rich brick red. As for Le Freak, it is a perfect Winter shade, a dark wine colour, and Daydream is a plummy brown shade which again is perfect for winter. 

What are your favourite items from Colourpop? 

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Friday, 6 January 2017

A Belated 2016 Favourites


*Insert obligatory comment on how fast 2016 went* 

Aloha! I didn't want to write a huge long post about my 2016 favourites, as there were many, so I gathered a small selection of products I couldn't put down, and here they are!



Skincare

Lush Snow Fairy
How could I do a yearly favourites without including my favourite shower Gel from Lush. Snow Fairy is a Blogger favourite but it's a limited edition shower gel, meaning you can only get it at Christmas time. On boxing day every year I am that crazy person who queues up outside Lush to get half price Bath Bombs, and grabbing multiple bottles of Snow Fairy to last me the rest of the year. It's such a unique, sweet scent, and reminds me of Candyfloss and Rhubarb and Custard sweets. 

Pixi Glow Tonic
I discovered this favourite after reading so many other bloggers skin-care posts, and almost all of them involved this. Its an exfoliating toner which you apply onto a cotton pad and then wipe on your face. It always leaves my skin feeling so smooth and cleansed, and it's supposed to even out skin tone over time as well, which I can actually see happening! Since buying this I've actually stuck to a pretty solid Skin Care regime which I wrote about here

The Body Shop Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil
Another product I spoke about in my recent Skin Care post was this oil from The Body Shop. It's a super nourishing oil which I apply every other night before I go to bed to ensure that my skin is hydrated. I have really been using this throughout the whole of 2016, and I've noticed my skin is much less dry and always tends to have a glow the morning after using this.



Makeup

Colourpop Super Shock Eyeshadows
After doing two Colourpop orders in 2016, I discovered the beautiful Super Shock Eyeshadows, which are a cream/powder hybrid, with intense colour payoff and long staying power. You have to use your fingers to apply these, which with acrylics is a massive pain in the arse, but once they are on they are absolutely stunning. One of my particular favourites is Rex, which is a dark navy colour with a purple iridescent shimmer running through it. It's safe to say that single eyeshadows are now winning over palettes, which is something I thought I would never say!

Kat Von D Everlasting Liquid Lipstick in Lolita
Sooo a general highlight of the year was Kat Von D now being stocked in Debenhams *can I get a woohoo?!*. Before this happened though my friend picked up this beauty from one of her travels, and I genuinely haven't put it down since. It's my go-to lip colour on minimal makeup days, when I go to work, and for nights out. I have so many liquid lipsticks but this colour is just like no other, and the formula doesn't dry out my lips too much either which is a bonus!

Too Faced Better Than Sex Mascara
Aside from the name, I can not fault this mascara. I was never one for non-waterproof mascaras as my eyelashes naturally grow down and I need waterproof ones to hold my curl. However, the Better Than Sex mascara manages to hold my curl, not crumble throughout the day, and also not transfer onto my eyelids. It only takes two coats to get really full and volumised lashes which makes it morning friendly! 

NYX HD Finishing Powder
Loose powders seem to have had a real moment in 2016, with the Laura Mercier Translucent Powder being particularly in the spotlight. I didn't want to splash out on this one so found this NYX one instead for a fraction of the price. I love using it for baking, and if I need my makeup to last a long time and be sweat proof this is the one. 

Morphe 9B Blush Palette
I was never really much of a blush girl before I bought this palette in the latter end of 2016, but now I wear it whenever I am doing a full face of makeup. It has every single colour you could possibly want, with a range of mattes and shimmers thrown in there too. Aside from the bright red shade, I really do use every colour, and they all blend like a dream.

Events

One of favourite events of 2016 has to be going to my first ever blogger event in Colchester. I wrote a post all about it here, and it was honestly such a surreal experience. It was only a small event at a local Jewellery shop, but I never thought I would ever get invited to a blogger event, and it gave me the opportunity to meet some other amazing bloggers.


Not so much an event, but another highlight of the year was going back to Camp De Mar in Majorca. It is one of my favourite places in the world and I was so lucky to be able to go back again in 2016. The whole week was so relaxing and much needed after the stress of second year exams, I'd do anything to go back right now! I wrote a post about my first trip there in 2015, if you'd like a read it's over here.


Let me know what some of your favourites in 2016 were in the comments!
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Monday, 2 January 2017

My Goals For 2017


Happy New Year! Here is yet another generic blogger post about my goals for 2017, I promise it's not too long!

1) Get a First in my Degree

For those of you who don't know, I am in my final year of my BA Linguistics degree, which I should (hopefully) graduate from in early July. I am really hoping for a first, as I've put a lot of time and effort into my studies the past three years, although I have been slacking recently. 

2) Be More Consistent in Blogging

I absolutely adore blogging and I know that Uni work has made my content and my consistency suffer a little. Throughout 2017 I am really going to push harder with my blog and make it more fluent, and ensure I stick to my two posts a week, Monday and Friday, unless I hit a major bump in the road. I also would love to do more outfit posts this year.

3) Travel More

Travelling is something I have really begun to enjoy over the past few years, and with a trip to Budapest lined up in February, I am hoping to travel the world a little more through 2017. I won't have a huge amount of money with student debt and only a part time job, but I am hoping I can save up enough to do a couple more trips throughout the year. I'm really hoping to visit New York this year as well as Disneyland Paris!

4) Have More Me Time

So many people think that students live this amazing life where they aren't working, and don't have to get up till 11am most days, and for the most part that is true. We do get up late, but we also go to bed late, so it all evens out. Anyway, my point is, with all my lectures plus the work I am assigned from Uni, combined with the hours I work at my part-time job, there really isn't much me time. This year I want to spend more time on me...doing the things I love, like going to the cinema, having coffee dates with friends and reading more books.

5) Spend More Time With Family

Once I graduate I will probably be moving back home, and after three years of not really seeing my family much, I'd love to spend a little more time with them. Perhaps a cheeky family holiday is in order!

6) The Generic "Be Happier in My Body"

Throughout 2016 I have really become more body confident and changed my body for the better through exercise and eating a little healthier. I aim to continue this through 2017 and build more muscle, rather than necessarily lose weight. I have gone from a 14 to a 10 over the past year and a bit, so losing weight isn't my priority as I am quite happy with my size. The areas I want to focus on in particular are my booty and my abs, if this is successful I will definitely be happy with myself. 

7) Have Saved Some Money 

Very vague, I know. But I am not the best at saving money as I tend to just buy everything I want without really thinking, but over 2017 I would like to save a decent amount. As I'll be a student for over half of the year I don't have a huge target goal, but every little helps.

8) Try New Gym Classes

My current gym doesn't offer much in the way of 'different' gym classes, and I am desperate to try Barre and Pole Fitness. Over 2017, especially once I move back to London, I am determined to try out some of these more unique fitness classes, as going to the gym can get pretty boring sometimes.

9) Minimise Crap!

I have so many belongings, which I found out after moving to University. 2017 is the year I will keep all my belongings to a minimum, and stop holding onto things for their sentimental value. I've decided to employ a one in - one out system with my belongings, so I won't be able to buy anything new without getting rid of something else.  

10) Do More For Charity and Less Fortunate People

Sometimes we all get lost in our own troubles that we forget the troubles of others, and those who have troubles much larger than we do. Over 2016, as President of my University's Makeup Society, I organinsed a couple of charity events for Look Good Feel Better, and we have raise around £200 with the help of influencers and their donations. I hope that over 2017 we can raise even more.

Please let me know down in the comments what your goals are for 2017!
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