Friday, 28 September 2012

Why I love Autumn

Images sourced from
As my tan is fading faster than I can reach for the moisturiser, and the nights are drawing in – it’s now dark when I leave my zumba classes at half 7?! – my autumnal love is starting to surface. There’s something about the season that makes me feel happy. As much as I enjoy the sun and wearing pretty summer dresses, I’m very much an Autumn/Winter lover...

Perhaps it’s having an excuse to wear cosy pj’s, fluffy slippers and curl up with a hot chocolate alllll the time (I promise I haven’t aged scarily quick, I am still 22!). Or maybe it’s the gorgeous colours I’m met by when I open the curtains each morning. Not to mention A/W wear – it’s SO much better than S/S in my eyes. Chunky knits, warm scarves, tights and cute coats, not to mention boots, hats a pretty rosy cheeks.

Aside from the aforementioned, and of course the obvious of hibernating in on a Saturday night with a dose of X Factor and more Chinese food than you can stomach, I thought I’d compile a list of the reasons Autumn is my fav seasonal chum!

#1 Waking up to a blanket of frost that’s settled in overnight, making everything glisten outside
#2 Wearing my A/W clothes! Jumpers, scarves, cosy knit tights, boots, coats, and mittens...
#3 The colours of the leaves – and hearing them crunch underfoot on a cold but beautiful welly-walk
#4 Coming home and feeling that relief as you enter the warmth, shutting out the cold
#5 Home-cooked meals. Roasts, soup, pies and casseroles always taste better at this time of year
#6 Blankets. Slippers. Cosy socks. Pyjamas. Top-knots. Jumpers. Hoodies. Bed!
#7 Watching films curled up on the sofa with friends, snuggling with a boyfriend
#8 Shopping: walking into the warmth from the chilly outdoors, and seeing everyone all wrapped up – plus retreating into Starbucks and giving in to their seasonal delights!
#9 Candles – Yankie Candle’s Christmas scented treats never disappoint and cosy-up a room instantly
#10 The promise of Christmas!! (AND my birthday...I love being a November baby)

Of course there are a few things I don’t favour as much, like de-frosting the car early in the morning, or covering a great outfit with a coat ALL the damn time. But the good outways the bad, and the season always comes up trumps. What do you love about Autumn?

Thursday, 27 September 2012

MAC Watch Me Simmer Lipstick





I’ve been meaning to blog about this beauty for a while you may remember me mentioning a fair few months back, I was super eager to get my hands on MAC’s Watch Me Simmer lipstick from the S.H.O.P MAC collection. Well after checking the site daily and wishing and hoping, it came back in stock!!

What better way to introduce myself to MAC’s lipsticks than with this gorgeous coral with pink undertones?! It’s actually much brighter than it seems upon application – I’d almost describe it as a fluoro-neon shade, so one slick achieves a strong coral-pink colour on my lips (I have quite naturally dark lips and I think the red in them brought out the pink in the lipstick moreso than the coral). Although different to what I expected, I’m so impressed with the quality. I love the slick, black packaging that MAC houses its lipsticks in, and the scent of the product is gorgeous! As a newbie to them, I’m not sure if all of their lipsticks share the same formula and therefore scent, but if they do I’m definitely investing in some more!

The smooth texture reminds me of a butter lip balm – with an added pop of colour – and the staying power out-does any of my previously bought drugstore lippies.

Every lip shade will take differently to each wearer so for some, it will come out as the perfect pink-coral (sans brightness!). Perhaps I will try basing my lips with a little foundation to combat the natural colour altering Watch Me Simmer’s loveliness.  

I can’t wait to try more. **Both birthday and Christmas are fast approaching** hmmmm.....

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

A perfect end to the summer



As briefly mentioned in my last post, I went on holiday last week. Seven days in Lanzarote with my best friend as a treat for graduating n'all (speaking of which I have a grad-present post coming soon! {despite still not having technically graduated...November's crazily late huh?!}). Anyway it was a very relaxed week of  sunbathing, dipping in the pool and reading/gossiping/eating ice creams etc. All the norm holiday-y things, and all of which make me very happy - especially when combined with mid-thirties heat! Gorgeous!

But now it's back to the norm, and by norm I mean job-hunting/trying to sort my life out. Hum-drum-drum. You can imagine my sadness when we touched down at Stansted, knowing that this is what followed the vaca. In's raining, cold and Autumn is well on it's way. I actually LOVE this season and would usually welcome it with open arms, but I want to show off my tan! So please warm up weather so I can at least sport pretty sandals. Not ready for coat-wearing yet.

Whilst away (well at the airport) I treated myself to a few beauty picks included Benefit's Boi-ing Concealer, Maxfactor's new Eye-Brightening Mascara in Brown, and an OPI varnish from the new collection that I've fallen head over heels in love much so that it deserves its very own post so I'll save that for another time.

The concealer (in No 2) is my all-time favourite with a beautifully smooth texture that's thick enough to cover every sin, under-eye circle and spot, creating a flawless look! At £16.50 for a pot that lasts me about three-months, it is definitely a staple buy.



As a mascara junkie, I am always willing to try the latest, so when I saw Maxfactor's new offering for £4.99 in Boots (RRP £7.99), I thought I'd give it a whirl! It claims to brighten your natural colour with light reflecting particles and gem-toned colour beads which enrich the eye. It is available in three shades - blue, green and brown - I opted for brown.

Having used it for the week I was away, I was impressed with the defined, lengthened and separated lash-look the product created, and the formula is a dark black, which I love. The brush is also a plus for me, being silicone, slim and sporting multiple sized bristles that make it easy to reach the corners. However, I didn't notice any difference in the brightness of my eye colour. I was somewhat dubious about this promise to begin with so wasn't too disappointed, but it's a great product for times when you want a quick, no-fuss application - although it doesn't create much volume for those of you who like the false-effect look (me included!). 

How are you all adjusting to the season transition? Summer-blues anyone??

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

MAC Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle





After watching some of Louise from SprinkleofGlitter’s old videos a few weeks ago, and seeing how glowing her skin was from using MAC’s Mineralize Skinfinish in Soft and Gentle, I thought ‘I must get me one of those!’. And so...I did!

And what a well spent £21.50. The domed-palette is so pretty, I almost didn’t want to use it! But as well as that being just...well silly, curiosity overcame me and I applied the golden coloured powder, flecked with glitter to my cheeks. Oh me-oh my how gorgeous it is!

The colour is subtle with a very fine pigmentation therefore it works perfectly as a highlighter. I apply it to my cheek bones over MAC’s Golden Frosted Bronzing Powder to create a warm glow. Despite the glistening ribbons that run through the product, the glitter is very delicate, not too obvious, giving a healthy, radiant, glossy effect – all positive qualities in my eyes!

It does wear off after about six hours but I find most cheek powders/blushers/bronzers do when used on oily-combination skin. You also only need a little amount of product to create the desired effect, therefore it lasts for ages!

It is beautifully light and smooth to apply too, gliding on with ease and complementary to any blush colour. I think it would look great with a tan too...I’ll test that theory next week when on holiday!

As each month goes by, I seem to be accumulating more and more MAC products – does anyone else have the same problem?! I just can’t resist! Next on my list is the Heavenly Creature Limited Edition Mineralize Blushers, but I think they’ve all sold out :(

Monday, 10 September 2012

Press trip

A few weeks ago I received an email asking if I would like to go on a press trip and then write a travel piece for a certain magazine. Of course I jumped at the chance...literally! My first commission AND my first press trip!!

Yesterday I arrived home from said trip, and what an amazing four days I had. Not only did I visit an indescribably beautiful part of a country I’d not yet had the pleasure of visiting, I stayed in two stunning hotels (with my own rooms!), took part in exhilarating activities I never thought I’d do, and met some amazing people. Plus thirty degree weather, delicious food and jaw-dropping views equated to a beyond brilliant trip – an experience I will never forget.

I was so lucky to be presented with this opportunity, and as if all that wasn’t fabulous enough...I now get to write a piece for a national women’s magazine! As a freelancer, I have written for various small print and online publications but this will be my first byline in a well known title. Eeeeeeeeeeeee I’m SO excited!!

Without revealing too much before the article is published, here are some shots from the trip. Perhaps you can guess where I went and what I did...
How did you spend your weekends?    

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Jewelled Candyfloss


I love painting my nails...there’s something about having perfectly polished, glossy talons that makes you feel girly and well presented – and it can say a lot about your personality, mood or even the season. Depending on the latter two points, I often opt for pinks, reds, browns or purples, usually from the depths of the OPI colour ranges and Barry M’s cheap but wonderful offerings! All finished beautifully with Nails Inc’s base and topcoat.

But as you can see from previous posts, I can’t say no to embellished nails! Whether it’s using a glitter polish, a pearl glaze overlay or even creating patterns with alternate colours, I love a bit of nail art.

So when I came across this wheel of nail gems in Topshop with twelve different designs and over 500 diamontés (£3.50...what a bargain!), I couldn’t resist. The colours and shapes allow for an endless possibilities when it comes to decorating your nails, and combined with different polishes, you could create a new look each time.

I created a simple, ultra feminine look combining Barry M’s ‘Bright Pink’ with fushia and pastel pink gems, and here’s how...


1. Shake out a few diamontés of each colour (approx 10) and spread them out, ensuring they are sparkly side up!
2. Apply basecoat (I use Nails Inc)
3. Apply two coats of your colour of choice (I used Barry M’s ‘Bright Pink’)
4. Allow for nails to go slightly tacky for a few minutes - *in the mean time, prepare your diamonté applicator. You will need a thin stick that will be easy to hold, and some Bluetack. I created mine with an eyeliner pencil topped with a blob of Bluetack!*
5. Select your gem and lightly tap it with the ‘applicator’ so it picks it up
6. Do one nail at a time. Hover over the area you wish to place the gem and gently press down so that it transfers from Bluetack to nail. To create my design, place one fuschia pink gem at the centre base of each alternate nail, and accompany it with two pastel pinks either side (only two fit on my little finger so I used one of each)
7. If the gem falls slightly out of place when applying it, gently tease it to the correct position with your tool. Once it is in the desired place, press firmly to ensure it stays put
8. Once all gems have been applied, coat them thoroughly in top coat to secure them


 And there you have a sparkly, candyfloss inspired look! You can add your own personal touch to this (I considered glitter on mine but thought it may be a little much?). Although can you really OTT on sparkle?

What are your favourite ways to decorate your nails?