Sunday, 11 May 2014


Inspired by the heavy liner dominating the catwalks for Spring/Summer 2014, I thought I'd show you how to recreate a very easy, pretty much fool-proof 1960s inspired look. Yes, I know, how on-trend of me. The tutorial is an example of how I would take inspiration from beauty trends and make them wearable. Truthfully, I wouldn't saunter to the supermarket in this look, but it makes a nice change from a smokey eye on a night out.

So, if you like the look of this homage to the screen sirens of the 1960s, but don't want the hassle of sitting with a makeup artist for several hours, then here's my step-by-step guide:

1. Put a base on your eyes. I actually used the base as the lid colour since I wanted something completely matte. Think of shimmer as your enemy in this look. My choice was MAC's Painterly Paint Pot but any matte skin tone shadow will do.

2. Use a cool brown in the crease for a slight definition. MAC's Omega eyeshadow was perfect here.

3. Using a smaller brush, apply a line of darker brown shadow over the top of the cool brown to create a cut crease. I used Paper Bag from the Sleek matte eyeshadow palette, but any mid-tone brown is fine.

4. Blend in this shadow until the line is softened but still slightly visible.

5. Using a black kohl pencil, roughly line your upper lashline, thickening it towards the outer corner and forming a subtle flick. Join this up with a thin line on your bottom lashline. It's probably best for you to refer to the photo on this one. A photo's worth a thousand words, as they say! You want to make sure the flick comes out quite far but doesn't go above your crease.

6. Using a matte black shadow (again, I used the Sleek matte shadow palette for this) smudge out the line you have create, especially the flick and outer corner. This will give the eye look a hazy, sultry effect.

7. Add as much mascara as you can physically get on your lashes, and remember not to neglect your bottom ones. After all, the 1960s were all about crazy doll-like eyes. I also added a nude liner to my waterline to brighten it up a little.

And that's all there is to it! Using a kohl pencil makes this look perfect for novice liner users because it is much easier to apply than the liquid or gel kind. Plus, it doesn't matter if it's slightly wobbly as you'll be smudging it after anyway.

For the face, I added only a contour and powder over my foundation because I felt the finish was more 1960s than if I had used a blush on the cheeks. I also decided to contour my nose with a small shadow brush to give that really perfect profile. 

Doing such a pale lip is quite new territory for me but I really loved the plumpness it gave. I used a nude ModelCo lip liner (one that I got free in a magazine *ahem*) and a Topshop lipstick in the colour Pillow Talk. 

I hope you like the look. I'm definitely going to recreate this for a few nights out! 

Monday, 5 May 2014


I feel like a very lucky girl today. Why? You might ask. Well, I have been nominated for two Very Inspiring Blogger Awards by the lovely Eesha for Eesha's Glam and Sunna for The New Noir.

The Rules
1. Link back to the person who nominated you.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Nominate a list of bloggers who inspire you.
4. Inform you nominees by commenting on their blog.

7 Facts About Me
1. I travelled to Paris for the first time last week. I learnt that the Eiffel Tower is very, very tall and that I might have a slight fear of heights. It was incredible though!

The view from the top of the Basilica of the Sacre Couer (so impressed with my artistic pigeon!)
2. I have also been travelling to Bristol a lot recently. I feel like everyone I have known ever is moving there at the moment and it makes me want to move there too! Oh, if you do visit Bristol definitely go and eat at The Stable. Seriously some of the best pizza and cider I have ever tasted and I don't usually like cider.

The Suspension Bridge in Bristol. I took this when I visited the other week.
3. This month, for my birthday, my friends and I went for a drink at the Shard. I would definitely recommend it! The views are amazing and you don't have to pay the £30 you would if you went up to the viewing point.

4. I have a labradoodle called Jesse James (blame my father for the name).

5. I have never read Lord of the Rings, despite having seen the extended versions of the films far more times than is necessary. I plan to start reading it tonight so I'll let you know how it goes.

6. I watched The Amazing Spiderman 2 recently and it was one of the best films I've seen in a long time. Andrew Garfield is definitely a far better Spiderman than Tobey Maguire ever was.

7. I now have nearly 150 followers on Bloglovin' which is insane! Thank you all so much for subscribing.

My Nominees

Wednesday, 23 April 2014


The first instalment of my collaboration series with Sunna from 'The New Noir' is finally here! After a gruelling day of outfit changes and makeup application, we can reveal our first model (victim). Meet Kat, an Oriental Studies graduate from London. She is tall with a fair skin tone.

Style-wise, Sunna expertly put together some outfits from Kat's wardrobe which suited her height (my 5ft1 self isn't jealous at all...). We may have made her bedroom look like the aftermath of a particularly vicious day at Primark (hands up if you've ever been to Primark after 4.30pm, looked at the mountains of disordered clothing, and turned straight back around again with a "nope"), but I think you'll agree that Kat looks absolutely stunning in Sunna's style choices! If you'd like to have a look at the final outfits, please head on over to Sunna's blog post.

Now, onto the beauty! Since Kat has just returned from a few months in Beijing, where she left all her makeup, it actually gave us the perfect excuse to go and buy a basic makeup kit. As Kat is a self-confessed beauty beginner, I tried to go for products I knew were both high quality and relatively cheap in price (basically I bought her a lot of the items I own myself). The total value of this kit came to around £50, which may not sound that cheap, but, believe me, it is crazily hard to produce an all-round, practical makeup bag for much less. It does make me seriously worry about the amount of money I've "invested" in my makeup kit over the years. Never try and work out how much cash you've accumulated in Boots and Superdrug points, ladies.

The Products

The items we settled on, and those essentials which I think would work well for a beginner with fair skin, are:

Rimmel Match Perfection foundation in 101 Classic Ivory- especially great for fair skin because the shade range is slightly broader than other drugstore foundations.

Rimmel Stay Matte Powder in 001 Transparent- A great all-round powder. I used it to reduce shine as well as set the concealer where it has a tendency to crease (under the eyes, especially).

Rimmel Lip Crayon in 120 All You Need Is Pink- Brilliant alternative to a bright lipstick because it is much easier to apply and you can build up the coverage from fairly sheer to full-on glamour.

Maybelline The Falsies mascara in Black Drama- One of those mascaras that every beauty blogger knows and swears by. It's also cheap, which is a real find because highstreet mascaras are usually quite expensive.

Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner in 01 Black- Just as good as any top-range gel liner and you get a brush included!

Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in Fair 1- I won't bore you with more praise for this product. If you'd like to see a full review, have a look at this post.

MUA Eyeshadow Palette in Undressed- A £4 dupe for the Urban Decay naked palette with all the neutrals you could possible desire. Especially good for Kat's blue eyes with the pink/gold undertone shades. If you'd like to see a full review of this product, click here, or, alternatively, if you'd like to see what sort of other look you can create with it, check out this tutorial.

Sleek Face Form Kit in Fair- Especially good value for money because you get a great contour, highlight, and blush. The contour is light enough to look subtle and natural on fair skin (as you can probably assume from the colour name; way to state the obvious, Lydia).

Ecotools Bamboo 6 Piece Brush Set- The first brush set I ever owned was actually from Ecotools. I honestly believe that, as an introduction to the (pretty intimidating) world of brushes, you can't get much better for about £16. That's only just over £3 a brush (wow, accurate mental maths and its not even lunchtime yet) and you get a free case included. If you'd like to read some more about Ecotools brushes and see what my first ever set looked like, then here's a post for you.

Eyelash curler (Kat's own)

Flowers (courtesy of Kat's mum)

The Look

A cheeky before for you.

And the after. 

Here's a stock looking-down-so-you-can-see-the-shadow photo.

The look I settled on (or rather the look I ended up with after getting too carried away) is this smokey eye and bold lip combo. I always think a slightly smokey eye is a great going-out idea for beginners because it involves more smudging and less precision. I used the taupey-brown shade (bottom row, third from the right) all over the lid, lined the upper lashline roughly with the gel liner and smudged this in with a bit more of the taupe shade. I ran what was left on the brush of the shadow and gel liner through the crease to add a little extra definition and blended the liner up to meet it. Then, I smudged some more gel liner and the same shadow into the bottom lashline. For a highlight, I used the lightest shade sparingly in the inner corner and on the brow bone. 

I know, I know, a bright lip can wash out pale skin even more, but, I think if it is applied properly and if you don't mind celebrating the fact that your skin might well be so pale that you glow in flash photos (speaking from experience, here) then it can help to create a really stand-out look. Kat likes to wear a red lip, but I thought a pink would be perfect for the spring and summer months. It's also a great way to modernise a really classic look. Plus, I've been loving a bright pink lip at the moment, so I'm a bit biased really. Keep the skin simple with a subtle contour and blush.

5 Tips for Beginners (with a fair skin spin)
  1. Ask questions! If you're completely bewildered by the thought of facing those makeup counters, then chat with friends about their favourite products/what they use. Or, if you're going for some high-end makeup ask one of the assistants at the counter. They're there to help. If you have pale skin, it is especially important to get advice about foundation. Certain foundations will look too dark or (god forbid) orange on your skin. 
  2. A smudged gel liner or eyeliner pencil is a great introduction to lining your upper lashline. It's more subtle and definitely more foolproof. 
  3. Contour should be applied under the cheekbone, on the sides of the forehead, and on the jawline. For the cheekbone contour (which, I admit, is slightly tricky), suck in your cheeks and apply lightly to the hollows you create, or, start at the same height as the middle of your ear and sweep down towards the corner of your lip. 
  4. A bright lip is a great way to switch from day to evening. Swipe a lip crayon all over your pout for instant glamour. 
  5. Blend any foundation or bronzer down the neck too. Nobody wants to be left with a face three shades darker than the rest of their body (plus, always count Mississippilessly in tanning situations to avoid similar embarrassment- pat yourself on the back smugly if you understand this reference). 

I think Kat looks gorgeous and I hope you all agree! Obviously, this look is more suited for an evening. Please, if you are a beginner, don't start aimlessly wandering the streets with full-on bold eyes and lips. If you'd like a more natural look for pale skin, then please check out my recent spring makeup look. I really enjoyed the challenge of applying makeup to someone else and hope you've found this interesting and useful. Check back in a couple of weeks for a new Make Me Up! I'll start sharpening my eyeliner pencils for the next "participant". 

Wednesday, 16 April 2014


The sun makes me happy. It's a fact really. I'm sitting here tapping away to the picturesque backdrop of a springtime evening and I can't quite believe that I honestly cannot see a cloud in the sky. This, for England, so early on in the season, is somewhat of a miracle. While it lasts, I thought I'd take advantage of the beautiful weather by taking some photos of the makeup I have been loving at the moment. This isn't quite a tutorial (mostly because the look is so simple that a step-by-step really isn't necessary), more a FOTD (face of the day). Wow, look at me using proper beauty blogging terms! Hopefully, this will be inspiration for those of you who are looking to give your look a bit of spring-clean for the start of a new season.

For spring and summer, I tend to live by the beauty mantra that "less is more" (and also not nearly as time-consuming). I blended MAC's Wedge eyeshadow all over my lid, on top of a base (MAC's painterly paint pot). Then, I attacked my inner corners with far more of MAC's Nylon than any girl ever needs.* The ultra-shimmery inner corner highlight looks really pretty when it catches the sun and was also a key trend for S/S 2014 (yes, I know, I'm always so on-trend). I finished off with some winged gel liner. As my eyes are quite big and round, I usually try and thicken the liner at the outer edge to elongate them slightly, but, of course, you could change style according to your own eye shape. And, with lots and lots of mascara, that's the eyes done!

I am so pale that, in the summer, whilst others get a lovely golden glow to the skin, my glow is more a blinding white. So, I usually apply bronzer to the high points of the face (forehead, cheeks, nose, chin) to fake that sun kissed look (don't tell anyone). A quick tip for you: if you're using a pink-toned blusher, apply a little of that over the bronzer to  make it look more realistic. Often when we tan, the skin gets a slightly pink undertone. It really does work, I promise. With a slick of tinted lip balm, the look is complete.

The Products
MAC Nylon and Wedge (far left top and bottom of my rather empty palette)
MAC Omega (for my brows)
MAC Paintpot in Painterly
Rimmel Match Perfection foundation in 101 Classic Ivory
Rimmel Scandaleyes Waterproof Kohl Liner in Nude
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder in 001 Transparent
Collection Lasting Perfection concealer in 1 Light
Collection Blush and Highlighter Cream Duo in Strawberries and Cream
Maybelline Eye Studio Lasting Drama Gel Liner in 01 Black
Maybelline Baby Lips in Cherry Me
Sleek Face Form in Light
L'Oreal Miss Manga mascara in Black

*Sorry for the MAC invasion, just got a few products for my birthday so, of course, I've been using them incessantly.

Sunday, 6 April 2014


I've never been one to wear a bold lip. They've just always seemed so much more effort than they're worth; the constant touch ups and very real fear of a lipstick-on-the-teeth moment has kept me firmly sticking to the tinted lip balms. A few months ago, however, I was introduced by the YouTuber Beautycrush to the most amazing lipstick I had ever seen. That's not an understatement. Believe me. I'm not the only one who's been loving this colour. I had to visit my local MAC several times before they had it back in stock. Not that I'm complaining. Any excuse to visit MAC is fine with me!

The colour is 'All Fired Up' (a bright fuchsia) and it's part of MAC's Retro Matte line. Here's a close up of my lips so you can see it in all its beautiful glory.

So, today I felt inspired to create a retro eye look to accompany this lovely new lipstick. It's a kind of sultry, smokey eye with a slight cat flick. I will be using the MUA 'Undressed' palette which I have reviewed in full, here. Perfect for those of you (like me) who can't afford to spend a tonne on makeup now they've invested in a £15 MAC lipstick.

Let's begin the tutorial!

1. Ensure you start with an even base on your eyelid. I don't use a primer, as such. I just apply my concealer (Collection Lasting Perfection) over my eyelid as I find it works perfectly to stop my eyeshadow from creasing.

2. Apply the lightest matte brown all over the lid. This will just help to soften the darker shadow once we apply it on top. No one wants a harsh smokey eye.

3. Use a gel liner (I used the Maybelline one) to line your upper lash line and wing it at the outer corner.

4. Blend the dark plum-tone shadow (bottom row, third from the right) all over the lid to create a hazy effect which will help to soften the liner slightly. This is especially great if you're not quite the best at applying eyeliner because it should help to even out any mistakes you have made.

5. Use the lightest shade (top row, first on the left) to highlight the inner corner and the brow bone. I added a bit of Topshop's Glow first to really enhance the shine.

6. Curl your lashes and add lashings (geddit?) of your favourite mascara. Also, line your waterline with a dark eye pencil. I used Rimmel's Scandaleyes in bronze because I find it's not as harsh as black and it brings out the green of my eyes. A dark purple or brown would look lovely too.

And that's it! Pretty straightforward, huh?

For the true retro bombshell look, I think it's only right that you contour your face to within an inch of it's life. After all, what's an Old Hollywood look without cheekbones you could cut yourself on? This is especially important for me as my cheekbones are pretty much non-existent.

I used the contour powder in Sleek's 'Light Face Form' kit for this. I applied it to the hollows of my cheeks, the sides of my forehead, under my jaw and chin, and on my ears (just to make sure they weren't glowing white next to the rest of my face, I'm really pale, guys). 

Then, I added the Collection cream blush in 'Strawberries and Cream' to my cheeks and used Topshop's Glow highlighter on the tops of my cheekbones, down my nose, and on my cupid's bow.

I hope you all like the look and that's it's given you some inspiration. It's very likely I'll be wearing this for me birthday party next week. Let me know if there's a certain makeup style you'd like me to create next!

Wednesday, 2 April 2014


I am a true believer in the importance of a good skincare routine. I mean, you only get one skin so you might as well look after it. Unless you've ingested some reptile DNA and have turned yourself into a reptilian humanoid monster (a la the Lizard from Spiderman), in which case you probably will have far more serious things to deal with. I am, however, pretty sure that 99.9% of you reading this article won't fall into this ultra-specific category so happy days!

My mum always advised that high quality skincare is vital and should be considered an investment. So, when I was younger I used the 3-step Clinique skincare routine. I have to say, personally, I didn't really think the high price adequately correlated with its results. Almost as soon as I waved goodbye to home comforts and a rather dubious hello to student debt, I must admit, I quickly abandoned this account-draining trio and stuck firmly to the face wipes. I wouldn't recommend this, kids. Nor would I recommend being too lazy to take off your makeup. Often.

Once I'd finished university and started earning, I was adamant that I wanted a multi-faceted skincare routine, but still refused to accept that you needed to pay an absolute fortune for healthy skin. Cue my own personalised, 4-step morning routine. All the products mentioned are available on the highstreet and I think they work just as well as my Clinique trio ever did. Case in point that a flawless complexion isn't reserved for the aristocrats among us.

Oh and a quick note before I start, I have combination skin which is slightly on the dry side. In case you were wondering.

1. Cleanse (part one)
First, I like to use a face wash because I think a splash of water does wonders in waking you up first thing in the morning. Also, it washes away any moisturiser or night cream that you had applied the evening before. My absolute favourite is the Witch Gentle Exfoliating Face Wash. I actually first used this product at my boyfriend's flat because I had forgotten to bring my own (he had the man version which is dark blue, the colour of man, apparently). I felt like I instantly saw results. It cleared up my blemishes and left my skin feeling clean, but not completely stripped of all nutrients and moisture. Needless to say, I made a special effort to pick up my own when I was next in Boots. You can purchase this product, here.

2. Cleanse (part two)
The second step to cleansing for me is using a micellar water. This just helps to make sure you are beginning the day with a completely clean base. It can sometimes pick up makeup that you inadequately removed the night before. I prefer a micellar water to a makeup remover because it is more gentle on the skin. I have tried out both the L'Oreal and Garnier versions of this. Although I feel the L'Oreal has been more raved about by the beauty blogosphere (it has been around for longer, I guess), I actually prefer the Garnier Micellar Cleansing Water. I must state that this is for no other particular reason than you get more and so aren't required to trek to the shops for a repurchase as often. Yes, I'm that lazy. It kind of makes you feel like you're saving money as well, even if you really aren't. You can purchase this product, here.

3. Tone
If there's one part of my skincare routine that I'm not completely sure about, it would be my toner. So, any suggestions here are very welcome! At the moment, I use Simple Kind To Skin Soothing Facial Toner. As my skin is on the dry side, I don't like to use an industrial-strength, burn-your-face-off type toner. It's a solid product but not one that I would say has significantly improved my skin. I don't know, maybe I'm being a bit harsh. You can purchase this product, here.

4. Moisturise
Another Simple product, but this time I have rave reviews! My moisturiser of choice, which I have used for a few years now, is the Simple Kind To Skin Replenishing Rich Moisturiser. It is unbelievably effective for skin that's definitely slightly towards the drier side of life. Plus, because it's so rich, you only need to apply a tiny amount. Four budget points for you Simple moisturiser, you GO Simple moisturiser! (Bellatula points for any of you that recognise this terribly delivered film reference). Sometimes, when the weather is warmer (about a week in Britain), I do find that this product leaves my skin slightly too oily, but, for the most part, I absolutely love it. You can purchase this product, here.

I do realise that it takes time out of your day to commit to a full-blown, beauty-guru-esque skincare routine, but you really will see the benefits, I promise. And when have I ever lied to you? Personally, I find the process quite therapeutic, but, then again, I'm a bit of weirdo when it comes to beauty.

Monday, 31 March 2014


I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that I probably could do a lot more to keep healthy and fit. For example, I have the upper body strength of a small child and a gym membership which, if you take into account the amount I actually use it, probably costs me about £15 a session. However, by some miracle, the past few days I have been feeling quite motivated to make a quick run for the healthy side of life. Sure, it probably is the looming, ever-closer threat of summer and the terrifying notion that, yes, I will have to buy my bikini soon otherwise they'll only have the weird ones left in stock, but it's a good feeling all the same. 

So, in an attempt to make this new, motivated me hang around for a bit, I've decided that, for the month of April at least, I will be eating healthily and exercising daily; a challenge for which I have created the ingenious tag #activeapril*. I'll be keeping you all updated on my progress on this blog, but also on my Instagram and Twitter pages (not-so-subtle plug for you to follow me on these too).

If any of you would like to join me in my quest for a healthy body, please feel free to take up this challenge as well! Having others to answer to if you start getting lazy can really only be a good thing. Having others to validate the fact that, no, you really don't need to have that burger you've been craving all day is a great thing. Make sure you use the tag #activeapril on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and you're all set. 

Anyway, it's probably an idea that I get off this computer and start doing something active! But, before I do, I have to tell you all, I poached eggs this morning for the first time and they actually looked like poached eggs are supposed to. For me, this is a huge step in the right direction. Wish me luck, I'm going to need it.

*I have no idea if #activeapril is already a thing. Let's hope I don't get slapped with a copyright violation... 


Hey guys and gals, I have some very exciting news for you. Guess who I'm currently sharing a Chai Tea Latte with in Starbucks? Well, not sharing exactly, that would be weird. However, I am enjoying the company (with our very separate beverages) of the beautiful Sunna from the fashion blog "The New Noir".

Sunna is a designer and writer from London and writes posts about fashion trends and style which are both helpful and interesting for fashionistas and style virgins alike. She also blogs her own progress as a designer and often includes helpful tips on beginning a career in the industry. I especially loved her recent get the look on Clemence Poesy; because who wouldn't want to look like Clemence? She is effortlessly elegant and, more importantly, she was in Harry Potter. That's all I look for in a woman, really.

So, I think I've now effectively built up the suspense, although the title gave everything away before I'd even started: we are going to be starting a collaboration series together! The series, called "Make Me Up", will give you style advice for your height, shape, age, skin tone, facial structure. We also thought we'd throw in a few "Get The Look" posts for good measure, where we'll show you how to look your best whatever the occasion, wear the latest trends, and recreate that celebrity look you've been dying to try.

I hope I've managed to whet your appetite with this little taster (pun intended). If you are intrigued by this OTP, then check back in two weeks when our first post of this fortnightly series will go live. For those of you who actually have a life, OTP stands for One True Pairing. I wouldn't look it up, if I were you. There's some very strange (I would even go as far as horrific) fan fiction on the internet.

Please go and check out Sunna's blog if you have the chance! Here's an example of her design work.

Sunday, 23 March 2014


I am very happy to have my third Liebster Award! Thank you very much, Selina! Check out Selina's blog, here. Here's a quick post with the answers to her questions.

What is your favourite perfume at the moment?
I have a staple perfume which is my signature scent, Nina Ricci's 'Nina' (the original, although I do love the special editions as well). I've pretty much used Nina Ricci my whole fragrance-wearing life. I should probably try and be a bit more adventurous, really. I did try Prada's 'Candy' this summer and absolutely loved the scent, but found it didn't last very long on the skin. Basically, anything that smells really, really sweet.

What are the three main qualities you look for in a partner?
A sense of humour, caring personality, and an optimistic outlook on life.

If you wear makeup, name one item of makeup you couldn't live without.
It would have to be mascara. My eyes are usually the focal feature of any makeup look I create, so mascara is a must!

Which do you prefer: bags, shoes or clothes?
Clothes. Every time. I actually went out to replace some worn-out jeans yesterday and ended up coming back with three extra tops.

If you had the chance to meet someone famous who would it be?
If it could be anyone from any time, possibly Audrey Hepburn. I just think she was so elegant and such a great role model. I have the obligatory IKEA canvas print of her in my bedroom.

All time favourite quote from her: "Nothing is impossible, the word itself says 'I'm possible'!"

If it had to be someone alive today, probably JK Rowling, partly because the Harry Potter books were essentially my childhood, but also because she is such an inspiration for all those aspiring female writers out there. Oh, and she studied Classics at the same university as me, so, you know, we'd have something to chat about.

Favourite season and why?
Definitely summer. Hands down. I get cold really easily and summer is pretty much the only season in Britain where you can guarantee a few warm days. Also, there's nothing better than a summer evening. I genuinely think everything seems better when it's bright and sunny outside!

Who is your favourite style icon?
I'm not really sure I necessarily have a style icon as such. I just buy what I like and think suits me. If I had to choose, it would definitely have to be either Audrey Hepburn (the last mention of her, I promise) or Grace Kelly. I just think that style era was so glamorous and sophisticated. One of my all-time favourite films is High Society, so if we could just all dress like that again, that would be great. Thanks.

If you had £100,000, what would you do with it?
I would explore the world! Spend it all! That's what I say! Just joking, I'd save at least £1000...well maybe like £500.

If you could travel to anywhere in the world, where would you go?
I've always loved Spain because I have family there, especially Madrid which is a beautiful city. I want to travel quite a few places but, at the moment, I have my heart set on Australia and Fiji. Oh, and I'd love to live in America at some point.

What is your favourite clothing brand?
Topshop because they do clothes for little people. I find it really hard to find clothes that fit me because I'm a rather tiny 5ft1. I also really love H&M. I think they do great quality clothes for really reasonable prices.

Describe yourself in 3 words.
Little, cheerful, amiable.

Thursday, 27 February 2014


It is very hard, as a lover of beauty blogs, not to be drawn into the MAC fan club. When browsing the makeup blogosphere, you can't get very far without encountering that little black and white logo. This summer, while proudly strolling out of my local shopping centre with that little paper bag, I felt a sense of beauty enlightenment. Truth be told, it had taken me many, many months to both decide on the eyeshadows I would purchase and justify spending such a lot of money on such a luxury item.

Having used (and fallen in love with) my MAC eyeshadows for the past 6 months now, I thought it was about time I discussed my impressions of the shades I have already purchased. Especially as I'll definitely be purchasing some more shadows soon; partly because I have hit pan on my two favourite shades, but also just because I really want to provide some more pretty colours with a nice new home in my MAC palette.

So, Why MAC?

In my opinion, MAC eyeshadows are seen as the staple beauty junkie product. They are the Porsche (that's a good car, right?) of the makeup world. If you watch a lot of makeup tutorials (and by a lot I mean that for the hours you've spent studying YouTube beauty videos, you should probably have some sort of qualification by now) you'll find that often shades are spoken about in relation to MAC ones. It is also very important that you know you are getting a good quality product for the (let's face it) rather large amount of money you are spending.

My Current MAC Eyeshadows

Omega- Absolute staple. Perfect for filling in blonde/light brown eyebrows (this is the only product I ever use on my eyebrows and will ever need). It is also a fantastic crease colour for a pale complexion.

Naked Lunch- Beautiful base colour. Contains shimmer but still looks natural on the eyes. Can be used for a day look or dressed up for the evening. Recently, I had one of my close friends ask what base shadow I used. You know you're on to a winner when your friends start asking you makeup advice.

Satin Taupe- One of those beauty blogger favourites. Looks pretty paired with Naked Lunch or wear it on its own, all over the lid. Honestly, I haven't used it half as much as Omega and Naked Lunch but it can create a simple, pretty, one-shadow eye look.

Star Violet- More of an indulgent purchase. Really brings out green eyes. I like to blend it under my eyes and in my crease for a dramatic and romantic look. However, I wouldn't wear this on a daily basis.

5 Pieces Of Advice From One Beginner To Another

1. Pick staple shades. Practical doesn't equal boring.

2. Choose shades that suit your colouring and eye colour. If you aren't an avid beauty blog reader then ask the experts at your local MAC counter or do some internet research.

3. Trust the majority but be sensible. If there is a particularly popular shade in the beauty community it is probably for a reason. However, if you don't think you'd ever use that colour eyeshadow then don't buy it!

4. Select a good mis of wearable and special shades. It's nice to own a few ultra-glamorous eyeshadows as well as the practical ones. 

5. Don't rush into anything. Take your time choosing. I still only have 4 shadows in my palette and I've had it for over 6 months. Maybe that's slightly over-cautious, but hey, I want my dream palette at the end of this!

Top Tip
Purchase the refill shadows, rather than the stand alone one. They are £2 cheaper and it is definitely more practical to keep them in a palette if you are planning on building up a collection. Plus, the palettes are actually pretty cheap in comparison to other MAC products. 

Thursday, 20 February 2014


I was very excited to discover that I have been nominated for my second Liebster Award by Danielle, who writes the blog 'Smitten with Sunday'. Thanks so much Danielle! Although I have already completed the tag, I'm going to answer Danielle's questions as a thank you for the nomination.

What is your favourite thing to do on a rainy day?
I love being able to catch up with the latest YouTube videos and blog posts. Also, a film day is always nice when it's truly miserable outside.

Do you prefer coffee or tea?
When I was at uni, I practically lived on coffee but I have to say I am really starting to enjoy a good cup of tea. I got very excited the other day to try a new type which I had bought. I think you can probably judge somebody's age by how they react to the prospect of a cuppa.

Are you a dog person or a cat person?
Definitely a dog person. I have a labradoodle called Jesse James (my dad's choice of name, he did want to call my brother this; lucky escape, Ben, lucky escape). I've never been particularly comfortable around cats. I was scratched by one as a child. In my infantile mind, it was an outrageous, completely unjustified attack. More likely, my incessant stroking was far less affectionate than I thought.

What is your favourite kind of cookie?
I love chocolate cookies, as much chocolate as possible.

If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?
There are many, many places I'd like to visit in the world. If I really HAD to pick just the one, it would have to be Australia. Actually, maybe Rome, I've always been interested in Rome's history *Classics geek alert*. Yes, I guess I've wanted to go to Rome for the longest. Let's say Australia for the lifestyle, Rome for the culture.

What was the last book you read?
The last book I read was 'The Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest' by Stieg Larsson. I absolutely love the trilogy but I have to admit they did get a bit tense for me in parts. You know you're a wimp when you manage to scare yourself reading a book.

Where is your favourite place to shop?
In terms of makeup, I usually buy a lot of my products in Boots or Superdrug. My favourite clothes store at the moment is H&M. It's just such good value for money! I'm pretty sure half my wardrobe is made up of H&M jumpers. They're all so comfortable and warm!

Are you a morning person or a night owl?
I'm definitely more a night owl. When I was a student, I pretty much became nocturnal. I'm the sort of person who needs to set two alarms in the morning to make sure I'm up with plenty of time. I've not got as far as having to hide my phone on the other side of the room yet. That will be a sad, sad day.

Who is your favourite music artist?
However cliche this may sound, I find it really hard to pick just one artist. My favourite album is probably 'Fractured Life' by Air Traffic. Oh, and I do love a bit of Paolo Nutini. I tend to go through phases where I will listen to a handful of songs until I am so sick of them that I physically cannot listen to them anymore. At the moment, it seems to be 90s music (think Alanis Morisette, Semisonic). I did recently have a bit of a Ratpack phase as well.

Do you have a favourite celebrity?
Not really, no. I think if a celebrity walked in the room, I'd pretend (really awkwardly) I hadn't noticed them/didn't know who they were. Wow, I'm so British. I think Emma Stone seems pretty cool, though.

What is your favourite television show?
When I was younger, I was slightly obsessed with 'Charmed' (American show about three sisters who are witches). I think I've probably seen every episode at least twice. Two more current favourites of mine would have to be 'The Inbetweeners' and 'Sherlock'.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014


Today, I delve into the makeup bag of Chloe, a 22 year old medical student from London.

Do you wear makeup on a day-to-day basis?
Yes but not very much.

At what age did you start wearing makeup properly?
I think I was around 17/18 when I started wearing makeup.

How long does it take you to apply your makeup?
My everyday makeup takes me about 5-10mins to complete. If I'm going out, I'd say it takes me no more than 20.

Where is your makeup bag from?
I have more than one makeup bag! They're from Paperchase, Clinique and Clarins.

What product could you not live without?
I couldn't live without my eyebrow pencil. I think that eyebrows are the most important part of a look because they frame your whole face. Mine are very sparse so I'll fill them in to give them more shape and structure.

What is your go-to makeup look?
To be honest, I just try and look presentable! I'm usually pretty conservative with my makeup application. The less I can get away with, the better.

What products did you use to create the makeup look you are wearing now?
Rimmel eyebrows, Clinique primer, Naked Palette, black eyeliner, Estee Lauder liquid eyeliner, Benefit Sugarbomb blusher, MAC Creme Sheen Fanfare lipstick, Clinique mascara and Lancome powder.

Are there any products in your makeup bag you are disappointed with?
Not really but I did have to repurchase the Rimmel eyebrow pencil because the first one I tried wasn't a great match.

Do you prefer your makeup bag to be full of new products or tried and tested ones?
My makeup bag is usually full of new makeup products because I tend to get a lot of it from my sister. I've only really repurchased the Lancome powder.

Which celebrity has your favourite makeup style?
(After much deliberation and Pinterest stalking) Natalie Portman (in the Dior adverts).

1. Lancome blush, 2. Benefit 'Sugarbomb' blush, 3. Stila blush, 4. Vaseline 'Rosy Lips', 5. Clinique mascara, 6. Shu Uemura false lashes, 7. MAC lipsticks in 'Fanfare' and 'Plumful', 8. Lancome powder, 9. nail buffer, 10. Clinique eye primer, 11. Rimmel eyebrow pencil in 'black brown', 12. eyeliner pencil, 13. Estee Lauder liquid eyeliner, 14. Ecotools angled brush, 15. Vaseline lip balm.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014


I was recently perusing the latest blog posts, as you do, and I came across a very interesting review about a fairly inconspicuous skincare product. Now, as many of you fellow bloggers out there will know, there were probably (well, definitely) a lot more pressing matters to be dealing with than scrolling merrily through my Bloglovin' feed. However, when an amazing product is brought to your attention, you kind of feel your time has been used a lot more proactively than it actually has been.

So, what is this magical product, heralded as "The Skin Saviour"(well, by me, anyway)? Insert the drum rolls and chorus of singers here; my beauty must-have of the moment is the Body Shop's 'Vitamin E Sink-In Moisture Mask'. Here's a photo of the product in question. Try not to be blinded by its heavenly goodness. 

I'm getting ahead of myself, though.  It is imperative that I tell you about this original recommendation post because it makes some pretty earth-shattering claims about the mask. The post was written by a blogger called Maddie, who writes a witty and very informative blog called 'Qworter Life Crisis'. Here's a link to Maddie's post. She writes that her mother was personally recommended the product by the creative director of L'Oreal UK. Let's be honest, that's a pretty good stamp of approval, right there. 

I found myself, then, about a week ago, searching the Body Shop shelves for this little beauty with, what I considered, the worst cold anyone has ever had. Ever. I don't know if this is just me, but when I get a cold my whole face seems to become more dry and devoid of moisture than the Sahara itself (sorry for this rather hyperbolic comparison, the lack of sleep from coughing has made me much more dramatic than usual). No moisturiser, no matter how rich, manages to repair my skin when it's in this condition, so, I thought I might as well test out these claims for myself. 

Having used this product for about a week now, I can highly recommend it. Not only has it kept my skin feeling soft and nourished through the 'cold ordeal' (as I'll refer to it from now on), but it has also cleared up several blemishes. Although it does give quite an intense amount of hydration to the skin, I have found that it is gentle enough to use every night and I really think it would be suitable for practically any skin-type. At £12, it is a bit on the pricey side for me, but you do only need the smallest amount per application so I can imagine it will last me a while yet. 

Yesterday, in a small Body Shop in London, I spoke so enthusiastically about the mask to a friend that I think she was slightly taken aback. All this after just a week of use? That's why I thought I better write this post now. Who knows what level of obsession I will have reached in a month or two.

Just a quick note to finish, there's a 40% off deal running for Valentines Day, information on The Body Shop website. So, go forth and spend, my friends. 

Friday, 7 February 2014


January really was a month of reinvention for me in more than the generic gym membership and wine-down-the-sink sort of way. Though, if you did complete dry January or have honed your body to goddess perfection, I hold my hands up to you in awe. But, no, really, without all the dramatic statements and sentimentality, I hope this could be the start of a productive year. Having rebranded my blog into this masterpiece that you are currently reading, giving my occupational life a well-needed overhaul, and just choosing to utilise my time a lot better, it should be a delightfully busy few months. For once, it appears I've taken those twelve chimes and champagne toasts seriously. Wow, it's right about now that I wish I had made resolutions. It seems always the case that the one time you don't try with all your might to make something happen, the proactive monster inside you is unleashed with such force that it kind of takes you by surprise. Time to stop rambling off into this abyss of a tangent and get on with those products that have made my January just that little bit prettier.

The Beauty Favourites

1. Rimmel's 'Match Perfection' Foundation
This actually is a new purchase for the new year. I'll link a full review of this product, here. However, let me just reiterate that I'm a bit of a foundation snob. There are only a handful that I will use because I hate cakey makeup with a passion and any orangey oxidisation really shows up on my pale skin. I can safely reassure you, having used this for the whole of January, that this foundation is neither cakey or orange.

Side note: those of you who like to use a colour too dark for your skin, please blend it down your neck and onto our ears if they're visible. Maybe you think nobody is going to notice. We do. Everytime. 

2. Sleek's 'Vintage Romance' Palette
I've spent a lot of time with this baby over the past month because it was my spotlight product of January. The fact that I have not got bored/sick of it definitely says a lot about the quality and variety of this palette. Here's a full review of it. 

3. Topshop's 'Glow' Highlighter
Winter is far from my favourite season. No matter how many layers I laboriously pack on, I will always be cold, and everything seems tinged with a dull greyness. The cold air and increased use of central heating plays havoc with my skin and tends to make it look really lifeless. This highlight is lovely and warm; a little glass pot of vitamin D. I especially like to use it as an inner corner highlight, but, honestly, I would smother it all over my face if it was socially acceptable. 

4. Revlon's 'Lash Potion' Mascara by 'Grow Luscious'
I was hesitant to try this particular mascara. The original 'Grow Luscious' did condition my lashes but left them clumpy and unappealing. On the other hand, the 'Lash Potion' contains all the great conditioning qualities of the original, but with a much better application. It gives my eyelashes volume but still separates them efficiently. A quick tip for you, though: ensure you leave the store with the right colour; I didn't check and picked up brown instead of black, oops. 

5. Simple's 'Illuminating Radiance Cream'
It sounds pretty specialist but this is really just a light moisturiser with a tonne of very fine glitter chucked in. I think there might be a pattern forming here. Obviously, healthy and glowing skin is very important to me at this time of year. I usually still apply a rich moisturiser underneath because it doesn't quite give my skin as much nourishment as I'd like it to. 

The Non-Beauty Favourites

6. Starbucks' New Mocha Lattes
So many calories, but just so yummy. One of the varieties doesn't even have a Venti option, seemingly because it exceeds Starbucks' maximum calorie allowance. If that doesn't make you want to try it, I don't know what will.

7. Pinterest
Swallows your time up, like Sims did to your childhood, but its great for beauty inspiration, funny little pictures and beautifully-presented motivational quotes. If you haven't already tried it, where have you been?! But, seriously, my Pinterest is linked here, if you're nosy, like me, and want to have a look at some of my favourites. 

8. It'sGrace
New and improved channel from YouTube legend Grace Helbig. Some comic relief from the horrendous weather we have in Britain at the moment. The only person I've seen who can make awkwardness and baseball tops look quite so humorous and adorable. Although, be warned, that swallowing up your time thing I was talking about? Yep, that applies to this as well.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014


Price: £4.00

The first Monday in February seems the perfect time for me to announce my spotlight product of this month. I felt that, since the last spotlight was fairly bold in its use of colour and finish, it seemed only right to change it up with a neutral eyeshadow palette. So, this month, my beauty focus will be the MUA 'Undressed' palette. 

Let's face it, as far as eyeshadow collections go, the demand for neutral shades is unquestionable. Sure, us beauty junkies like to be a bit experimental at times, but there's nothing better than a good, natural look to make you look a million bucks. Certainly, the beauty retail industry has begun to realise how lucrative this area is and many are reaping the benefits of a carefully crafted neutral palette. Possibly the best example of this is the Urban Decay 'Naked' collection, which has been raved about by practically every beauty guru I can think of. 

Here's some great news for you: the MUA 'Undressed' palette is an outstanding value dupe for the first  eyeshadow collection in Urban Decay's 'Naked' range. Yes, the branding is anything but original (why think of a unique name when you can just pick up a thesaurus). However, we'll forgive them for their audacious and oh-so unsubtle replication since the product is just so darn outstanding for the price you pay. Consequently, those 'Naked' palette admirers, who are too intimidated by the icy glare of its £37 price tag, can pick up pretty much the same shades for a fraction of the price.

There are, of course, some downsides that come with the enormous cut in cost. As with many cheaper products I've tried, the packaging is fairly low quality and doesn't, in my opinion, look particularly expensive. It gets dirty and scratched very easily, though I am particularly terrible at keeping my makeup in pristine condition (well, at looking after my stuff in general) so perhaps you'll have more luck than me here. Additionally, there is no mirror included, which can be a pain if you're hoping to travel anywhere with this as your staple palette. Nevertheless, I believe much of the cheapness in price might be down to the newness of the brand; the mark-up is likely to be a lot lower than other, more established highstreet makeup companies. 

When I first tested out this product, it was a pleasant surprise to discover that, despite the minimal cost, the shadows themselves are a very nice texture, extremely pigmented, and have scarcely any fallout. They also wear very well, though I would apply a base underneath to prevent creasing. Anyway, let me show you how they appear on the skin in a swatch photo.

I was impressed that even the lightest colours are clearly visible and do not appear chalky in the slightest. Actually, all the shades are creamy and have a lovely depth of colour. It is also a plus that you get a mixture of finishes in the collection. Sometimes value makeup brands tend to forget the importance of a few matte shades in a practical day-to-day palette, yet, here, you have matte, frosted, and glitter finishes. Although I do keep talking about the quotidian aspect of this collection, it is more than suited to all sorts of occasions. The variety of shades will certainly allow you to create just as many party looks as natural ones. 

All in all, I would recommend this product to anyone, from a beauty beginner to a full-on veteran of makeup application. Quite frankly, you can never go wrong with a neutral eyeshadow palette. Especially one that produces such long-lasting looks for mere pennies. Still not sold? Over the next few weeks, I will be showing you exactly what you can create with this palette, and, believe me, I will be spoilt for choice. X