February Favourites

Friday, 27 February 2015

It pleases me that the title of this post uses alliteration, does that make me really sad? Anyway, here are some of my favourites from this month:

As part of my never ending quest to have more voluminous hair, this was my latest purchase. I had gone into Boots with the intention of re buying the Tony&Guy Casual Sea Salt Texturising Spray, however, they were out of stock and so I searched the shelves for something else to buy. I hadn't tried a backcomb spray before, so I thought it was worth a shot.Once I've sprayed it, my hair is noticeably bigger, however, it doesn't seem to hold for that long, but once I run my hands through my hair, the volume does return. I'm coming to accept that I will never have voluminous hair, but this has helped a lot.

As mentioned in my Christmas Beauty Haul, my brother bought this for me for Christmas, as any beauty lover or blogger will know, this is one of the best selling MAC lipsticks and is popular among many females. I'd been after it for ages and when I finally got it, I was unsure when to wear it as it's quite a heavy colour for my light skin, especially if I wore it during the day. However, these past few weeks I've been on a couple of nights out and to a couple of parties, so it was the perfect opportunity to crack out this gorgeous lipstick. I absolutely adore it! It really completes a make up look and it's so pigmented that it lasts all night, definitely my new favourite lipstick!

This has been my favourite perfume for about two years now and as it's quite pricey I always wait until I'm going through Duty Free to buy it. However, having bought 50ml of it in June, I suddenly noticed that all of a sudden it had gone down dramatically and there was only a drop left. I think I must have dropped it and a crack appeared so it gradually seeped out or it evaporated when I was on a plane in January. Either way, I was suddenly out of my favourite fragrance which really annoyed me because I love wearing that scent. However, my mum treated me to a new bottle and having not been able to wear it for a few weeks, I realised why I loved it so much and have been wearing it constantly these past couple of weeks.

Every month I seem to have a new favourite TV series and yet I never think I have the time to watch TV, but somehow I always manage it! This is one of the series that Emil and I have been watching together since finishing 'Orange is the New Black' and I am absolutely in love with it. It's about a police detective - Luther and follows his life and the crimes he tries to solve alongside trying to sort out his own, messy, personal life. It's so gripping and I love that it's set in England rather than the USA as I feel I can relate to it more. The amount of times I've had to watch it through gaps in my fingers or clinging onto Emil is ridiculous, but it's so well written. Unfortunately, there aren't many episodes of it, so we've nearly finished all of the series, but I strongly recommend watching it. It was on BBC, but I don't think you can watch it on there any more, but it is available on Netflix.

What have your favourites been this month? Let me know in the comments below.

Urban Decay vs Revolution

Wednesday, 25 February 2015

The Naked Palettes are currently one of the most popular eye shadow palettes around, at £38 they’re not cheap and are a small investment for some people. However, I currently own both the Naked and Naked 3 and love them both. I wondered for a while whether or not I should get the Naked 2 palette to complete my collection, however, there is a lot of overlap between the Naked and the Naked 2, so I decided against getting it. However, as mentioned in my Christmas Beauty Haul, my friend Loren kindly bought me the Revolution Redemption Palette Iconic 2 which is supposedly an exact dupe, so how do they compare?

As a high end brand, it’s no surprise that the Naked palette is more pigmented and that’s one thing I love about the palette, you don’t need much to create a beautiful make up look. However, whilst the Revolution palette isn't as pigmented, there is a lot of product and so you can afford to use a lot of it to make up for the lack of pigmentation.

Long Lasting
Again, it’s unsurprising that the Naked palette lasts longer as this often goes hand in hand with pigmentation and it’s what you’d expect from a more expensive brand. Having said that, I have been really impressed with how long lasting the Revolution palette is for the price, it stays on for most of the day, however, I do find that I have to wear a primer with it.

At £4 the Revolution palette is a much, much cheaper option and is great for those who can’t afford to spend £38 on eyeshadow. Having said that, I do prefer the Urban Decay palette because the shades are more pigmented and generally they last longer. However, I do think Revolution is definitely a great alternative if £38 is too pricey for some people.

The one thing I love about the Urban Decay Naked palettes is the packaging. Naked is in a velvet-like case whilst Naked 2 and 3 are both in a metal tin, all of which are beautifully presented and come with a mirror built in as well as a brush. This is so handy if you're one of those people who do your make up 'on the go'. I like the brush, as I use the thicker end to apply the eyeshdow across my lid and the smaller brush to blend through the crease. Although the Revolution Redemption Palette Iconic 2 doesn't come with a mirror, it does come with a foam eyeshadow applicator. Personally, I'm not a massive fan of these and so haven't used mine, however, it is a reasonable size, so it's great if you are a fan of those applicators. Whilst this palette doesn't come with a mirror, I do love the simplicity of it and the fact that you can see the shadows through the lid.

Have you tried these two palettes? Let me know what you think about them in the comments.

Who Cares Anyway?

Sunday, 22 February 2015

I haven't published a blog post in about two weeks and I thought I'd write my ramblings down as to why that is. When I first started my blog, it was just a place for me to write and comment on things that I enjoyed from make up, to fashion, to days out with friends etc, however, lately I've felt really negatively about it. I'm constantly reading and looking at other people's blogs and comparing mine to theirs and I find myself criticising my content, my photography, my design etc. I'm sure many of you can relate that to everyday life, we live in a society where we're constantly comparing ourselves to other people; that girl at work who is skinnier than you or the girl at uni who always has nicer clothes or the couple who are constantly jetting off on holiday. We get so hooked up on comparing ourselves to others, that we forget to be grateful for the things we have ourselves.

A friend of mine tweeted yesterday and said:

 'The more you seek the perfect life, the more time you waste being unhappy and ungrateful for the blessings you already have.' 

This really resonated with me because I think it's so true, we're always wishing we had more and not appreciating what we already have. I'm constantly comparing myself to others and putting myself down and so I guess it was only natural that this would extend to my blog. 

I have to keep reminding myself that my blog is just a hobby and for a lot of people, it's their profession  and they have more time than me. Also, I guess it's important to relate this to everyday life, everyone is different and sometimes you just have to take a step back and be grateful for what you already have. I'm so lucky to have my blog to escape to after a busy day at work and I've come a long way with it since I first started. Similarly, I know that I have a lot of things in my personal life that I'm very lucky to have and others don't have. I think we get so hooked up in the busy lives that we lead that we fail to appreciate the things around us. I guess what I'm trying to say is, be more positive about you and the life you lead, who cares if someone is skinnier than you, are they happier? Or who cares if that girl at uni has nicer clothes, she may really wish she had gorgeous hair like you. I challenge anyone who is reading this to take a moment to appreciate all the good things that you have in your life and to hold onto those without letting the negativity seep in. 

I'm sorry for rambling on, I'm not even sure this makes sense any more, but it's something I wanted to get off of my chest. Hopefully, normal blogging will resume on Wednesday when I have a new series of blog posts planned. 

Dealing With Being in a Long Distance Relationship

Sunday, 8 February 2015

There are often debates around whether or not long distance relationships can actually work or if they're destined to fail, I've always been a bit sceptical about this debate. Having had one long distance relationship fall apart, I was worried about entering into a new one. I met Emil when I was still at University, so for a couple of months we saw each other a lot, although at the time we weren't together. I then moved home once I graduated and we decided to get together, however, it's not been an easy ride. We live 150 miles away, Emil works 9-5, plus DJing and I'm doing my masters whilst doing shift work, this makes it very difficult to have matching days off. However, we have made it work so far and I'm really happy, so I thought I'd share with you my tips to a successful long distance relationship.

1./Speak Everyday
Anything from a text, call, skype or email is important. Emil and I text throughout the day when we're free and call in the evenings. I think this is really important because it's a great way to catch up with each other and feel like you've been part of each others day. We talk about everything from our days at work to what we had for dinner, but it's a way of staying close and allows us to talk about how we're feeling and helps the distance feel a little less daunting.

2./Plan Ahead
Where possible, try and plan when you're next going to see each other before you leave from visiting one another. We try and plan our next visits as far in advance as possible. This means that I always know when I'm next going to see him which makes things easier because I have something to work towards. I get excited by planning ahead and deciding what we're going to do together and it seems to make the time pass more quickly.

This is probably one of the most important aspects of a long distance relationship, if you don't trust each other it's unlikely to work. Both you and your partner are going to interact with members of the opposite sex on a regular basis, whether they're colleagues, friends or just members of the public and it's important that you don't feel insecure about it. Being insecure in your relationship is one of the most painful things ever, it can lead to false accusations, tears, arguments and a breakdown in the relationship. It's imperative that you build trust from the beginning of the relationship, otherwise it's never going to work and the distance will pull you apart. 

4./Make the Most of the Time You Spend Together
In a long distance relationship, time spent together is so precious and it's important that you make the most of it. This may mean nice meals out, days trips or just lazy days with pizza and a film, whatever it is, it's important that you cherish the time together because it then gives you something to hold onto during your time apart.

5./Find Something You Both Like
This is a great way to give you something to chat about and share with one another even if you're not together. This could be a TV series or the latest fashion trend etc, but whatever it is, it draws you together. Emil and I always have a TV series that we watch together and it's a great way to chat and discuss things we both enjoy, So far we've watched 'Suits', 'Orange is the New Black' and we're currently on 'Luther'.

6./Know Each Other's Schedule
Not to the point that you stalk each other, but it does help if you're worried when they don't reply to your text/you're unsure what time you can talk. Being apart from one another can send your imagination into overdrive when you're expecting a text, but haven't heard back in about 5 hours, knowing that they're in a meeting/studying can prevent that. Also, it helps for me to tell Emil when I'm studying so that he doesn't think I'm being off with him if my texts are abrupt, but that I'm just in the middle of an essay etc.

7./Stay Positive
Positivity is key, if you start being negative about where things are going or the distance, then you start doubting the relationship. It's hard to be upbeat when you haven't seen each other for a few weeks and you're having a bad day, but it's so important to remain positive as it'll keep you on track and help you to enjoy the time you do get to spend together.

8./Enjoy the Time to Yourself
If you spend all your days missing your partner, it will make the distance seem harder and will only make you miss them more. Instead, make plans, see friends, find hobbies etc, it can be refreshing at times to not feel like you have to constantly plan around your boyfriend/girlfriend. Keeping your mind occupied can help the time pass more quickly and before you know it, you'll be reunited with one another.

Although I try and follow these steps, it is difficult being in a long distance relationship and it's not always easy to stick to the points I've just mentioned. I look at couples who live together or see each other on a regular basis and I envy that so much, I wish I could see Emil whenever I wanted or that when I have a bad day I can just hug him and for him to reassure me that everything will be okay. Having said that, it is possible to maintain a long distance relationship and if being with Emil means I have to travel 150 miles or that I have to wait 3 weeks until I see him, then I wouldn't change that for the world.

January Favourites

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Normally I feel like the months whizz by, however, it really felt like January dragged on and on.  Although this month started off really well for me, seeing in the new year in New York, it gradually went downhill as I had two statistics exams to revise for at the end of the month. So, January pretty much consisted of revision and working. However, my time in New York and post exam celebrations have given me some exciting favourites to include.

As mentioned in my NYC Beauty Haul, I bought this whilst away, having lusted over it for months. I know there is so much hype around it, but I really don't know how I have managed to live without it for so long. I have the unfortunate pleasure of large pores and this helps minimise their appearance and has made me much more confident about wearing less make up. When I do decide to wear a full face of make up, it really does help to keep it in place, even on a night out. I will be saving all of my pennies to ensure I can afford to repurchase it.

I mentioned this product in my Body Shop Advent Calender Post so I won't ramble on about it too much here. However, what I will say is that I have been absolutely loving this cream over this past month. As previously mentioned, I've never gone anywhere near night creams, but having received this one in the advent calendar, I thought I would give it a try. I use a very small amount each night and it leaves my skin feeling so soft, even when I wake up the next morning. I can't wait to buy the full sized version once this one runs out.

3./Clarks - Lynsky Joy (sold out)
I feel like I am forever promoting Clarks, but these shoes really are my favourite shoes this month. When I first saw them come into store, I was a bit unsure about them, they are a lot more clumpy then the boots that I would normally buy. However, having spoken to several colleagues who had bought them, they all said how comfortable they were and the tread on them was so impressive that I thought they would be ideal for if it snowed in New York. I wore them the whole week whilst I was away and they were perfect! They were so comfortable and kept my feet so warm, I've even worn them on a night out since being back as they're so versatile for smart or casual occasions. 

4./Cream Roses
This one's cheating slightly because cream roses are forever a favourite of mine. However, one day whilst revising I heard the doorbell ring and on the front step stood a delivery man with a huge parcel, apparently addressed to me. I was so excited to open it and was shocked when I was presented with a gorgeous bouquet of cream roses and a beautiful glass vase. Emil had surprised me as he knew how down I had been with revision and because he knew how much I was missing him (long distance relationships suck!) Anyway, for the past few weeks of January they have been sitting on my chest of drawers and always bring a smile to my face.

It's not very often that I get caught up in the hype of TV programmes and rarely sit down to watch a series on TV (a lot of the time I just catch up on my laptop). However, two years ago, my mum got me into Broadchurch and I was so engrossed - I absolutely love it. This month, they have brought it back for a second series and it's better than ever. If you don't know the story line, the first series is about a young boy who's body is found on a beach and the series is full of twists and turns as they try and find the killer. They eventually find the killer at the end of the series and the second series looks to be about his trial. However, as with the first time round, it's not plain sailing and there are yet more twists and turns, at the end of every episode there is such a cliffhanger that draws you back week after week. It's so well written and I've been loving watching it every Monday evening with my mum. If you haven't seen it, I've provided the link to ITV Player - you must go and watch it!

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What have you been loving this month? Let me know in the comments below.

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