Thursday, 30 January 2014

January Favourites

So last year, I managed to put up a grand total of ONE monthly favourites posts. I thought that was a bit of a shame, because I love reading about other people’s favourites – it’s the one post/video I’ll always click on if I see it – so this year, I have resolved to try and put up a favourites post every single month, so you can see what I’ve been enjoying lately! Without further ado…


Eye Products
As an eye shadow base you can’t beat the Maybelline Colour Tattoos – this one is in On And On Bronze, but I have also been obsessed with the Pomegranate colour lately. They’re so good if you’re in a rush – just swipe it on and go! (Although it does really stick, so don’t swipe it too crazily or you’ll get some weird looks on your way to work).
I’ve also been absolutely in love with the Yves St Laurent eye shadow palette in Pure Chromatics. This was an incredibly generous Christmas present from my sister, and I’ve used it pretty much every day since. I'm going to do a separate review on this soon, but for now I'll just say it's beautiful and I'm obsessed!

Lip Products
I’m still a big fan of my Nivea Lip Butter in Vanilla & Macademia – my lips are all dry and gross at the moment, and this helps sort them out. Lipstick wise, I’ve been going for the Models Co lipstick in ‘Kitty’ during the day – an easy to wear nude pink, which actually came from a Birchbox – and another amazing present from my sister, Yves St Laurent Rouge Pur Couture in number 42, for evenings/nights out. This is an amazing bronze-red which goes on like silk – I absolutely love it. Lipstick in general is a big thing for me at the moment – I need to stop buying them but I can’t, I think I have a problem, I need to go to meetings.

Brushes
I got some Real Techniques face brushes for Christmas and the buffing brush is amazing – it makes all foundation go on looking high end. I have to admit I didn’t think this would be worth the hype but it really is – it’s changed my face! (Not literally – it hasn’t given me a nose job. You take my point).

Perfume
Another Christmas present, the Jean Paul Gautier ‘Classique’ perfume is my favourite scent of the month – it’s strong enough that it lasts all day, but isn’t overpowering, and although I’m not even going to try to describe the scent, it’s the type I like – go and smell it!


Candle
Yankee Candle in Christmas Cookie might be sold as a Christmas candle, but I can’t tell what’s Christmassy about it – it smells like white chocolate, which, okay, maybe some people only eat white chocolate at Christmas, but I personally am partial to it all year round! I’ve been really liking burning it this month – it’s a nice, soft, bedroom scent which isn’t too overpowering or sweet.

Fashion
My Aspinal Of London purse – an insanely generous gift from my parents – is the new love of my life. I basically just can’t stop looking at it. It’s the perfect size, and the leather is beautiful, and it smells nice (is it weird that I love the smell of leather?!) It’s basically the best thing ever and if it was legal to marry a purse I might seriously consider it.

TV Show

Luther – my boyfriend and I have watched the entire first series of this in three days (okay, this sounds mental, but it’s only six episodes long), and I then practically had a breakdown when I realised only the first series was available on Sky On Demand, and have almost fallen over my own feet to order the next series, like, now. It’s a detective show, and just a disclaimer – it’s really graphic and a bit scary (if anyone’s seen it – the episode with the licking-tongue man haunts my dreams). But it’s also really clever and intense and GOOD.
Special mention also to Channel 4 – some seriously hilarious shows on lately which have cheered up my rainy January nights no end!

Blog
Burger Me! - A blog about burgers, mostly London based. Trust me though – never read it when you’re hungry!

Song

The entire new Arctic Monkeys album is amazing and I can't stop listening to it - I think my favourite song is 'No 1 Party Anthem' but basically...just get the album, okay? 

Food
Crussh smoothies. One is called a 'fat burner'. It's like drinking negative calories...right? 

Unfavourite
The WEATHER. Can it just stop raining now? Looking out of my window it's like we live in Mordor. Oh, and having to move out of my flat!

Leave me your favourites posts below and I'll go check them out, and don't forget to enter my Victoria's Secrets give away! 
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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Origins Skincare Favourites


Origins is definitely one of those brands that I don’t think I would ever have heard of if I hadn’t started blogging. Since then, I’ve been dying to get some products to try out on my ‘combination’ (aka ‘worst of all worlds’ skin) – which, since Christmas, has been dry and also prone to break outs. Fun! Anyway, I managed to pick up a few pieces in January which I’ve been using all month, so now that they’ve had a good try out, I thought I’d share my thoughts…


Origins Drink Up – Intensive Overnight Mask

This is probably the most famous Origins product I’ve ever heard of – it’s basically an intensive moisturising mask which you put on overnight. I was a bit worried that this might make my skin oily, but it’s actually really lovely – although to me, it’s less of a mask, more of a really thick moisturiser. I use this about once a week (because of oil-fear) and my skin does seem to respond well to it in general. The smell is a bit odd, but doesn’t last very long! I’m not sure I’d repurchase it, but it is a nice additional product to have in general.

Origins Make A Difference Plus + Rejuvenating Moisturiser

This isn’t the moisturiser everybody raves about (the ginseng one), but I liked the ‘rejuvenating’ idea so decided to pick it up, and I absolutely LOVE this. I’ve graduated to using it morning and night, and I find it absorbs really easily but still leaves my skin feeling really soft  - it’s definitely helping to reduce any dry patches I have, without being too heavy. It also smells nice! If you’re looking for a really good, solid moisturiser that does what it says on the packaging, I’d go for this one. I really like the packaging too – it feels expensive, and it’s secure enough to take when you’re travelling.


Origins Make A Difference + Treatment Lotion

Again, this isn’t the famous Origins spot gel, but because my skin is so prone to irritation I was worried that would make my skin sore or dry, so picked this up instead – and it is a miracle worker. I’m not exaggerating – if I have a breakout, or if I feel like my skin is looking irritated, I put this on overnight and the spots seem to absolutely disappear. I have quite literally never had a skincare product that worked as well as this one – I love it! I will be repurchasing over and over again – this little bottle is a must have!


Have you ever tried any of these products? What do you think of them?  
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Monday, 27 January 2014

Benefit Groovy-Kinda-Love Review

I’m a big fan of Benefit make up, and I particularly love the cute little sets they bring out which give you the opportunity to try out different things from their brand without shelling out for a full size product. One of my Christmas presents from my Mum was this ‘Groovy Kinda Love’ set, which I’ve been loving, so I thought I’d do a quick mini review of all the products that come in it!


This exact set may not be available but Benefit often bring out identical or similar sets in different packaging. I particularly love this packaging – it’s in a sturdy metal tin and I really like the colours and the design on the top!


First up – the Benefit Porefessional primer. This has had a lot of attention at the moment, mainly due to the release of the Porefessional powder, and opinion on it seems pretty divided. I, personally, love it – I just really like how it feels all silky on the skin, I like that it has a colour to it, and I feel like it makes my make up easier to apply. I don’t particularly think it makes make up last longer, but then I’m not sure any primer I’ve ever owned has done that! These tubes look tiny but actually last for ages, so I’m really glad to have another one.

Secondly there are two small blushes in the colours ‘Dandelion’ and ‘Gimme Fever.’ I’ve wanted to try Dandelion for ages – it’s a gorgeous, almost pale peach shimmer, which I thought might not show up on my skin but actually looks really nice. ‘Gimme Fever’ reminds me of the ‘Dallas’ blush – it’s a deeper, rusty red shade which works well for contouring. The only trouble with these blushes is that they’re quite small and close together so it’s easy to mix them together when you’re using them, which is a bit of a pain!

Next up is Benetint, a lip and cheek stain. I suppose if I had to choose one product to remove from the selection, it would be this one – it’s not that I hate it, it’s just not something I particularly like. I’ve used it before and find the scent really odd – the colour is okay, I guess, and it’s a useful multi purpose product, I’m just not over keen on it!


The set includes four eyeshadows in neutral brown colours which I absolutely love – I was surprised by how pigmented and pretty they are. There’s a white, which is great for highlighting, a gorgeous golden taupe which reminds me of one of the colours from the original Urban Decay Naked Palette, a bronze and a darker brown. They’re great to use in creating a really pretty natural eye look.

Finally – the ‘They’re Real’ mascara. Now, I’d never tried this. To understand my impression of this product, you first need to know that I really hate mascara. I just don’t get on with it – my eyelashes are really short, and I find that if I apply mascara they either look really messy and clumpy or you can’t even tell I’ve got any on. Whenever I read a rave review of a mascara, like the Maybelline Rocket or whatever, I hopefully go and buy it, only to find that to me, it’s just like every other mascara in the world – aka a bit rubbish. So I never bothered to buy this mascara because I just didn’t think it would work for me. Obviously, though, it was in the set, so I gave it a go – and I LOVE it. I have no idea what it is – it doesn’t make my eyelashes look fake, but it does make them look longer and darker without looking spikey or spidery, and it stays on all day without sliding down my face, and it doesn’t irritate my eyes. I love it and I will definitely be buying it again!


Do you have any of these products? What do you think of them?  
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Friday, 24 January 2014

Little Reasons To Be Happy This Friday

I’m not sure I’ve ever fully understood the expression ‘TGIF’ as clearly as I do today. This week just seems to have been one thing after another – I was ill on Monday, on Tuesday I found out our landlord is selling our flat, so we need to find somewhere else to live; on Wednesday, work exploded and I’ve been working insane hours, and finally yesterday we decided to try and buy our flat, so we’ve become embroiled in intense discussions with mortgage advisors and bank people and so on, making serious scary decisions that I don’t feel old enough to make.

But anyway! Bearing that in mind, I thought I’d do a little post on five little reasons I am happy today, other than the fact that it’s Friday so tonight I can drink a glass of wine the size of my head and pass out in bed for 11 hours…

Falling in love with books again



I picked up this gorgeous book by Nina Garcia in Waterstones when I was at Greenwich this weekend, and I love it – it’s hardback, beautifully illustrated and really enjoyable to read. I’ve realised that even though I love the convenience of my Kindle, there are some books that I just need to own physical copies of! I’m really looking forward to reading more of this curled up at the weekend.

Looking forward to my holiday



Without giving away the surprise, I’ve booked an exotic holiday for March and I can’t wait! I’ve been wanting to go to this destination for years, and just having a bit of sun to look forward to makes gloomy London a little easier to bear. I’ve also started my holiday shopping, and I’ve got my summer clothes out – I know  I can’t wear them yet, but it does make me feel a little brighter just looking at them!




My gerbils



Whenever I’m feeling a bit down, or even just tired and grumpy in the morning, these little guys never fail to cheer me up with their hilarious antics. We got them out on the bed recently and they went mad scampering up and down but then settled down on the pillows with us! We’ve also found out they like to eat Cheerios – they get very protective of them and hide in corners to eat them! They’re my favourites!
  
A little bit of nail art



I really like trying out simple, easy nail art which doesn’t require a load of complex tools. Recently I’ve gone for this snow leopard print nail, and a pink and black check based on my pyjamas! I want to try a pastel manicure this weekend, so hopefully that’ll work out!

Wanting to enjoy life more

Sometimes I think I get caught up in worrying…about the future, my job, everything…when in reality I should just try to have more fun! 




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Monday, 20 January 2014

Greenwich Market Time

Despite being a massive fan of food markets and living so close to Greenwich that I can practically see it from my flat, I’d somehow never been to Greenwich Market before until this weekend.



Sunday was such a beautiful day that after lazily lounging around reading the papers and drinking diet coke all morning, my boyfriend and I decided to head over and have a little wander. It turned out to be one of the nicest days I’ve had this year so far!



We ended up actually walking to Greenwich via a tunnel under the river, which was slightly bizarre – I had literally no idea it was there, so that was a bit of a novelty!



The first thing we saw was the Cutty Sark, blinking in the sunlight. We didn’t go round, although I do want to at some point. Instead we headed straight to the market.




The first half of the market is food, the back half is arts and crafts and all kinds of bits and pieces. 





We wandered around looking at pictures and hand creams and furs and coasters and furniture and so on, trying not to buy everything we saw (it was a struggle!)



I came away with this cute little fridge magnet – it turns out our fridge isn’t magnetic, so that’s a bit odd, but err, I’m sure I’ll find somewhere to put it!


I have to say, though, the food is my favourite bit. I mean…just look at some of the options available…

Bad brownies.


Mini pancakes (just look at them!)




Meats, breads and cheeses.




A hundred different types of curry.



Sweets and chocolates.




Drink some juice...or something a bit stronger!



What did we go for? A good, old fashioned chilli dog.




A soft bun, succulent sausage, smothered in chilli and cheese and onions. I have to say it was one of the best things I’ve ever eaten.



That sounds ridiculous, especially considering I’ve spent the last week hopping about in Michelin star restaurants, but you know what – it was just that good! Ian enjoyed it too!



Afterwards we wandered through the park to burn off the calories. It was a gorgeous day and the park was filled with couples hand in hand, families with excitable little kids, and cute dogs racing about.





We walked right up to the observatory at the top, which gives an incredible view over the Wharf (and we could see our flat, which is always good fun.)






When you’re right into the depths of the park it’s only the view peeking out over the trees that reminds you you’re in London, and for someone who misses open space quite a lot, that was something I appreciated.



With cold hands, we ended up in the Waterstones cafe – I made a purchase, despite having a Kindle, which I’m very excited about and will blog about later. And then, even though it was still pretty early, we settled down by the fire in a pub!



Maybe a few too many glasses of wine later we finally headed home. I would honestly recommend a day in Greenwich to absolutely anyone, no matter how far away you live – it’s worth a trip. Try to do it on a nice day – I really can’t wait to come back in summer, buy a load of cheese and bread from the market and curl up on a picnic blanket in the park! There’s so much to do that I think everyone would enjoy it. Have any of you been?  



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