Walk in Wardrobe, Banbridge

Wow, it has been a hot minute since I sat down. to write something for you all but today I had the most wonderful experience that I just had to write about it.
For those of you who don’t know I am from Northern Ireland and I used to live in a town called Banbridge. Banbridge is home to a stunning little boutique store called Walk in Wardrobe. Owned by a stunning girl called Laura, she and fabulous team are there and have the most amazing array of clothing I have probably ever seen.

I was kindly invited down to have a nosy at what they have to offer in store and I was not expecting to fall in love with so many pieces. I am definitely made for Autumn, especially when it comes to selecting an Autumnal wardrobe so today, I was in my element.

Before I get into anything I wanted to share that the lovely gals over at Walk In Wardrobe gave me a discount code for you guys to use, you can enter ‘CJ15’ at checkout for a limited time only to get 15% off!

Let’s talk about experience first before I get into the stunning clothing, from the second I walked in I was greeted with friendly and inviting hellos. This just sets the tone for the rest of the day as I was waited on hand and foot, I’ve honestly never experienced the depth of interest from someone in a store but Walk in Wardrobe is so much more than a store as I came to realise.

Everything in the store is expertly merchandised and laid out so it’s easy for you to see. On the ground floor lies the majority of the occasion wear so if you’re looking for something for a wedding, christening, etc then it’s perfect! The top floor then is where I fell in love with everything I touched and it’s home to the majority of the casual wear.

I picked a few of my favourite items and placed them on a rail and proceeded to act like a kid in a candy store while trying on such amazing pieces. If you follow me on Instagram then you will probably have seen these already on my stories but I wanted to have somewhere that you can revisit if you want to see them again, plus everything will be linked below the outfit. You can view them below –

Outfit 1

Before I even came into the store I knew I wanted to try out the Black Biker Leather Jacket, £74 as I had heard so many great things about it. I built this outfit based on the leather jacket but the truth is, with a leather jacket you can wear ANYTHING. FYI, this jacket is faux leather.
I picked up the Penny Tan Paperbag Waist Trousers, £59 and they were an instant hit for me, beautiful fabric and really comfy. They were a little snug round the hips and stomach for me, but that was to be expected as I have wide hips! The Heidi White Blouse, £56 was a natural addition to this outfit as honestly, nothing beats a smart crisp white shirt and to liven everything up a bit I couldn’t not try the Leopard Print Heels, £39 – a perfect daytime shoe. The heels are Goldilocksish as they are not too big and not too small.

I jazzed it up with the stunning Savannah Teddy Coat, £219 which I instantly fell in love with, such a soft material and it just screams luxury. This is definitely a piece that you will wear time and time again which makes it worth the money! When buying your items you should always try and remember what your cost per wear will be, and with this it is timeless and your cost minimal per wear.

Just showcasing another way to wear these trousers then, this time opting for the Rachelle Red Polo Neck, £54. This item comes in several shades so if you aren’t rave enough to rock the red there are plenty of options for you. At first when I looked at the price tag I did think to myself, ‘Gosh, £54 for a polo’ but the second that I put it over my head I felt instantly comforted and honestly would have paid more for the polo. This polo is delightfully light so it can be easily tucked in to shorts, skirts, jeans and trousers alike without making you look too bulky on top. I have a larger chest and a thin knit like this is perfect for me.

I had seen the Tina Tan & Red Coat, £179 on the Walk in Wardrobe’s Instagram recently and knew I had to try it out, I though it would be perfect for over these trousers. I was immediately attracted to the colours in the coat as I knew it would go with so much of my wardrobe. Literally any colour of jeans, countless trousers and considering 98% of my wardrobe is camel and black it would have been a good fit for me. I paired this outfit with the cutest White Trainers With Star Detail, £59 for a more dressed down look.

This Cara Mustard Paisley Print Shirt, £49 was one of the first things I spotted when I was in the store and I was hooked. I knew I wanted to pair it with something equally as loud just to make a real impact and so when Roisin showed me this Savannah Mustard Pleated Skirt, £78 I knew it had to combine it with the shirt! You could wear this skirt so many ways however, and with more colour than you think! It would be beautiful carried into Spring/Summer as well with beautiful white jeans, so another key investment piece! I’m a firm believer that you can wear bright pattern shirts for any occasion, whether it’s day drinking with the gals, out for a romantic dinner and you could even dress it down for the office.

The blazer. Let’s discuss this stunning ‘Arabella Green Velvet Blazer’, £89. This is on my Santa List. From the second I put it on OMG I felt so cool! I was with my Dad when he found a green velvet blazer and bought it and I remember thinking ‘oh my God I want my own blazer’ and this is it! It’s such a flattering shape, nipping in perfectly at the waist and has enough detail on it to make it look more expensive that it actually is! For £89 you might want to invest in a classic colour like black but truthfully, this green colour is a statement piece and would be easily worn to jazz up any daytime outfit. The long and short of it is – I want it.
Teamed with another pair of stunning trousers, the ‘Cara Green Paperbag Trousers’, £69 fit perfectly and hugged in just the right way. Again, worn with trainers for a dressed down look but these ‘Cosmopolitan Black & White Trainers’, £49 were my fave! I thought they were so edgy and cool! To keep it light and on the more casual side Roisin grabbed me a super cute cami, the ‘Cherie Stone Animal Print Cami’, £32 but I also wanted to demo how to dress up the trousers as well so I paired with a stunning blouse which you can see below.

You can really see the details in these trousers now and it nips in at the waist. The ‘Savannah Emerald Tie Neck Animal Print Blouse’, £64 is another perfect item for me as someone with a large chest as it has a pussybow detail, which means that you don’t have to deal with buttons popping open. Any chesty ladies out there, definitely get investing in a blouse like this! It’ll change your life!

Another one of my favourite pieces I tried was definitely this ‘Arabella Trench Coat’, £98. I feel like I have said this about every item but this is truly a statement piece, that will last season to season never mind year to year. If I hadn’t already bought a short trench coat recently then this would’ve been going home with me on the bus. A trench coat can be thrown over anything, and I do mean anything. It’s that perfect jacket for when you want something light but don’t want to be too cold, want something dressy without being too dressy, want a casual ‘throw it on ‘ jacket. There is nothing that a trench coat can’t do. This is probably one of my favourite trench coats I have seen for a long time, close second was one from Zara but the length was absurdly long, this is perfect length!
I teamed this up with a beautiful ‘You Are Lovely Scarf’, £29. A lovely camel and reddish tone scarf which is perfect for adding a little pop of colour to your outfit and sits perfectly over the trench coat adding a little something extra. Underneath is the same red polo and Walk in Wardrobe’s ‘Leah Black Bum Lift Skinny Jeans’, £54.

#obsessed with the dress. Roisin, who works in Walk in Wardrobe helped me out so much when I was in store and I asked her to pick out something that she loved that she thought would suit me. As I am a shortie she lifted this stunning dress out, explaining that the slit in the leg will make for a taller slimmer appearance and the faint animal pattern on the dress makes it a little more interesting than just another LBD. Not to mention the puff sleeve, which is pretty cool. Check out the ‘Carla Black Puff Sleeve Dress,’ £259.

Don’t forget discount code that you guys can use, you can enter ‘CJ15’ at checkout for a limited time only to get 15% off!

Thanks so much for reading, I hope you liked the clothes – I am obsessed with them!

Happy Shopping xo

Fitness Update

Recently I have received some messages with questions about how my gymming has been going and what I have been up to since I last posted about fitness.

I started going to the gym around March time and you can read my first post about it here. Basically since then not much has changed however, I have gotten more consistent with going to the gym and I am still with my Personal Trainer. I haven’t hit my goals yet, but I am well on my way there.

Fitness

Today I wanted to write about my brain in relation to getting up and going to the gym. I figured that as soon as I started seeing results that my motivation would grow and grow and I wouldn’t need to force myself to go. It’s quite the opposite. If anything I am struggling more with finding motivation to attend the gym and go to my classes, etc. but what keeps me going is how I feel after. I may feel like shit before I go or before I even leave the house, but what gets me up and at it is how free and good in myself I feel when I walk out of the gym knowing that I have accomplished something. That is the feeling I have been focusing on for the last few months. That is what keeps me motivated.

I will put together a list of what I do in the gym if that is of interest to anyone, more so to anyone who is a gym novice and maybe wants a few quick things that they could add into their own gym routine.

Diet

It’s not just going to the gym though, I have spent a lot of time looking into my diet and making changes to each meal to make it a healthier version. Now, I am no nutritionist and I genuinely know nothing other than the basics when it comes to food but I have tried to familiarise myself with the foods I should be eating and what I shouldn’t. I have stopped reading into fad diets and shakes and bullshit teas and created a healthy , enjoyable meal plan for myself.

The biggest change I have made is actually eating breakfast. For someone that loves food so much, I honestly don’t know why I skipped a meal. If I would have eaten anything, at most I would have had a Belvita bar which is basically a glorified biscuit. What’s crazy is that at the time I would have thought that a Belvita biscuit was healthy but now that I am familiar with macros and what I should and shouldn’t be eating in terms of carbs, etc now I know better.

I have become obsessed with porridge. Like, I get genuinely excited by porridge. I used to think of porridge or oats as something that people in prison would have eaten because it look so uninviting but oh my GOD, I was wrong. I love mixing different things into it to jazz it up a little, like banana and a spoonful of Nutella, or some berries and honey, or peanut butter and anything. The list goes on. One of the mistakes I was making with my diet is shockingly, I wasn’t eating enough and to be honest I’m still not but I am getting better!

If I have a little more time to make my breakfast I love some sourdough, avocado, bacon medallions and poached eggs. A few months ago that would have sounded like too much effort and my worst nightmare but now I swear, it makes me salivate. Before, when I would have had breakfast I would have had pancakes or toasted soda drenched in butter or cheese, still sounds great but these other things I am eating are making bigger changes and keeping me fuller for longer.

I could keep going about what I have been eating but that’s another post for another day.

Results

Similar to my most recent fitness related post Gym Update – One Month In I have laid out my results in the same way – like before and afters.

Weight
Starting weight 89kg – 14.01 stone
Updated weight 76.2kg – 11.9 stone

Measurements
Neck – 37cm – Now 35cm
Chest – 113cm – Now 101cm
Waist – 97cm – Now 89.5cm
Hips 116cm – Now 105cm
Thighs – 70cm – Now 63cm

If you are starting a fitness journey, I highly recommend writing your results down somewhere and measuring yourself. When I stand and look in the mirror I genuinely don’t see much of a difference but when I look at the above results it’s clear to see that there is a difference.


Back to Basics

Having a well edited wardrobe gives me some serious joy and today I was sitting looking at my clothing (is it just me that does that?) and I love the wardrobe that I have created over the last few months.

I am used to walking through stores and paying out for exuberant and unique items that are stand out pieces. These are great at the time however they are items that do not last and can’t be worn season to season. Essentially what I decided to do was create a kind of capsule wardrobe for myself. What is a capsule wardrobe you might ask? It is a phrase coined by Susie Faux in the 70s and describes key pieces that you can wear time and time again without them ageing. She describes it as having “2 pairs of trousers, a dress or a skirt, a jacket, a coat, a knit, two pairs of shoes and two bags” that co ordinate in colour and you can mix and match easily. No disrespect to Faux but I probably have at least triple that amount right now with no intention of changing, but the point is that’s how many items it takes to completely transform your wardrobe.

My favourite place to shop for a new wardrobe on a relatively minor budget is H&M. I’m a sucker for earthy and neutral tones as they work so well together and I am trying to stay away from buying so many prints. Each season I have decided I am going to purchase a few statement pieces and maintain my colour neutral wardrobe. I have picked my top faves from H&M that will easily transform your wardrobe too.

Tops

Top With Ties, £17.99

Having a classic white top that you can wear tucked into trousers, jeans, skirt or shorts will take you a long way in your wardrobe. If in doubt pair your items with a fresh, crisp white shirt.

Cotton Shirt, £12.99

If you have followed me for awhile, or even take a glance down my most recent instagram posts it’s clear that I have a love for white shirts, but I love having crisp shirts and tops like the previous post and then casual shirts like this. I especially love the button details on this shirt to make it a little more interesting. Plus, this is from the Sustainability range!

Draped Wrapover Cross Body, £12.99

A classy body that comes in both black and white can be easily interchangeable from outfit to outfit. Worn under a blazer or worn along tucked into a skirt or trousers these styles of tops make a nice change to shirts.

Long Sleeved Blouse, Khaki Green, £17.99

I have a ridiculous love for wearing khaki green. There’s something about so nice about khaki and for someone like me who’s day to day wear doesn’t extend too far past black and white, the khaki is nice for something different.

Basic Tops, Price Varies

You know all those little tops that you have lying around that you can’t find a home for? The stringy tops, the basic cotton blends and the tops that go ‘under things.’ I get all mine religiously from H&M. Sure, the likes of Primark, New Look, M&S etc do all the same types however, I know and trust that my H&M ones last for years. Years. That’s why I keep going back.

Trousers

Slim Mom Jeans, £19.99

So, Mom jeans. I am a very curvy gal and had sworn off Mom jeans after I had a break down in the Topshop changing rooms trying to squeeze my thicc thighs in. Until now. I decided to give these guys a try considering the price as well I almost thought it was too good to be true. Ahh they are amazing and so so comfortable. I was stuck in the skinny jeans rut for ages and I am so happy to have these as alternative. Plus, there are belt loops. This is very important to me.

Embrace High Ankle Jeans, £34.99

I don’t know why, but it had never occurred to me that I could have a pair of tan colour jeans. Do you ever be in a jeans mood and the standard blue or black pair just aren’t cutting it for you? Enter these. They are a great alternative when you’re in the mood for jeans but not jeans.

Ankle Length Tie Belt Trousers, £19.99

I have the black ones but my mission is to own all three colours. I am in love with this style of trouser as I love things that can be dressed up or down. Wear a pair of brogues and a blazer with this and you’ve got a work outfit, slap on a pair of heels and a bodysuit and you’ve got yourself a ‘drinks with the girls’ outfit.

Cigarette Trousers, £12.99

After a Rimmel Sun Shimmer incident in 2008 I swore I would never wear white trousers again. Fast forward 11 years and I gasped at not only these trousers and the fact that they come in every colour under the sun, but the fact that they are £12.99. I am still reluctant to wear white trousers at times however, at this price I couldn’t not pick them up. White trousers are so classy and look amazing!

Skirts & Shorts

A-Line Skirt, £14.99

I’m not hugely into skirts only for the reason being that I am short with a larger hip area so they tend not to be the most flattering thing on me. With that being said, I like to have a few skirts on reserve as wearing trousers and jeans can get very boring very quickly.

Short Skirt, £17.99

Even though I don’t wear a lot of skirts, I just have to have this skirt in my wardrobe. Not only do I wear it in work a lot as we have to wear black, it’s easily worn with a pair of tights and boots and is another great staple to carry from season to season.

Lyocell – Blend Shorts, £19.99

Not typically a plain go to item but I like to have the odd thing that’s different in among the wardrobe. I would love to wear these with a plain white shirt (duh, do I wear anything else?) and cute little boots and a jacket.

Dresses

Jersey Maxi Dress, £14.99

I used to walk past these styles of dresses and not give them second thought. Now? I live for them. I have a few of these in different colours and while I find them a little on the basic side they are so easy to jazz up with some simple styling tips. Slip a basic white tee underneath, wrap a black belt around the middle – otherwise my curvy ass would look like a sack of spuds – some booties and even a hat if I was feeling adventurous.

A lot of the dresses that I have are louder in prints as I don’t wear them just as often. The ones I wear all the time are black for work and if I am honest, all look the same. I am enjoying the mindset of having items that I can mix and match and so am trying to stay away from dresses as they always look the same!

Jackets & Coats

Modal Blend Trench Coat, £29.99

I have an addiction to buying jackets and coats and Joel really is going to throw me out of the house if I come back with any more. That being said, I wear the same 3 jackets on rotation. I just can’t part with the jackets I have collected. Why? Anyway, I do have last years version of this jacket but this year’s is nicer. Can guarantee I’ll come home with this and then be homeless.

Utility Jacket, £29.99

Any kind of jacket that has multiple pockets for all my lipsticks and packs of gum gets my vote. This jacket is firmly on my wishlist for my wardrobe, I have sworn that I’ll get rid of all my other jackets if I get this one. Khaki in a jacket will go with all my trousers and other outfits which is amazing! Will I stick to my word and get rid of them though, that’s the thing…

Biker Jacket, £34.99

If you do not have a biker jacket or leather jacket in your wardrobe I am telling you now, you need one. I have had my leather jacket for years. It’s my go to for running to work, when you need a light jacket, throwing over a dress for a night out and just to match general outfits. Obviously there are many colours that you can get, but to me a classic black biker jacket is where it’s at.

Accessories

Wool Hat, £14.99

I love wearing a hat. Not only does it hide your hair when it’s greasy but it adds sophistication and edge to your outfits. Be careful not to over accessorise however!

Belt, £6.99 Each

As I mentioned, sticking a little belt around a dress makes all the different and accessories add dimensions and layers to the most basic of outfits creating chic and stylish looks. I have so many belts it’s insane, but all you really need is a black one and a brown one. Maybe a nice gold one too…

Bags

Crocodile Patterned Shopper, £34.99

Love, love, love this bag. I am not one for small and dainty little bags. I carry a lot of crap – mainly tissues and lipsticks – and this is such a good looking bag. I also like it – I am in fact purchasing as we speak… anyway, I like it because it’ll match the entire wardrobe. It is such a melt having to change your bag depending on what outfit you’re wearing and so this way, you’re always prepared.

And there you have it! My favourite items to turn your wardrobe around, all from H&M. What way do you shop for your clothes and what are you statement items in your collection? I’d love to know!

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube!

What’s In My Make Up Kit?

Warning! This is a long one…

As a Make Up Artist I am forever getting messages about the products I use, how I use them, what I use on clients and what’s in my kit. This post will be an overview of my die hard products that are never too far away from my kit.

My make up and my kit make up are separate so that I know I can literally get up and go the morning of a wedding or day of doing makeups. Not only that, but it’s good to keep your make up and kit make up separate in terms of hygiene. I wouldn’t use an eyeliner on someone that I use on my myself for example, even with cleaning it. Perhaps that’s just me, but I like them separate.

The products I use I like them because I trust them, I have used them for years, they suit a large variety of skin types and are easily packed up. I would love nothing more than to pack up every type of highlighter and bronzer I own but I would need 3 suitcases. It’s important to pick the best of the bunch and keep it compact.

Hygiene
Before you even think about touching someone’s face or going near a make up product please make sure that you have a hygienic set up. In one zip lock bag I always have
– Spray bottle of water
– Spray bottle of alcohol
– Brush cleaner
– Hand sanitiser

You can pick up empty spray bottles anywhere, I grab mine from Boots as you can get different sizes and some even come in packs.
Hand sanitiser is one of those products that can smell so strong and I hate the thought of someone smelling that on my hands so I use The Body Shop Sanitisers in my kit. They have so many wonderful scents, I love the Satsuma one! They are £2.50, in a small enough size that will fit neatly without taking up too much room and they are usually 3 for 2 as well which is amazing!

Tools & Accessories
In addition to your hygiene you should of course have the following in your kit
– Clear travel bags. I get mine from eBay as I didn’t want to spend too much on them as I bag everything! You can also get them from the likes of Boots, Superdrug and even Primark!
– Disposable Mascara Wands – you can again, get these anywhere. I get mine from Mac, because I’m boujee but you can’t them from Sallys, Amazon, eBay, etc
– Sharpener (I sharpen and alcohol pencils before every use)
– Brushes, of course this goes without saying
– Eyelash curlers – I live for the Charlotte Tilbury Life Changing Eyelash Curlers
– Small scissors
– Metal Palette (I have a My Kit Co one – it’s great for mixing foundations)
– Tweezers
– Eyelash glue
– Cotton pads & cotton buds

Skincare
I do be genuinely shocked when I see make up artists start to work and they go straight in with primer or foundation. What. Are. You. Doing? I always use moisturiser, don’t get me wrong it doesn’t have to be anything fancy! Just use some type of skincare before applying, the make up will glide on so much better and the skin will look and feel fresher. Again, I have a zip lock bag with travel size cleanser, toner and moisturiser as well as a pack of wipes. I stock up on the No. 7 wipes when. they have the £5 off vouchers in Boots!

Primer
Some people love primer, some people hate it. I am one of those people that love it and I have many to prove it! For years I used the Smashbox primers but I fell out with them when they stopped doing the blue one! I now use the Make Up For Ever primers. They have one to suit every possible skin type and I do own most of them!

I would highly recommend for anyone even just starting out if you got the Mattifying Primer and the Hydrating Primer as most people can fall into the dry or oily category and at least that way you have something to suit the majority. If you feel like you want to expand The Smoothing primer gets rid of pores like nothing I have ever seen! They do mini 15ml sizes, £14.50 of some of the primers too which is a great way to try them out however, the larger 30ml size, £26 is better value. I have 30ml of the Mattifying, Smoothing, Hydrating, Nourishing and some of the Radiant primers as these are great for different skin tones, then a 15ml of the Redness Correcting Primer. Primers genuinely last me a really long time and unlike foundation where I find everything runs out at once, primers I will only need replacements every few months.

I also have the Charlotte Tilbury Flawless Filter’s. While not technically primers or foundations, they are more of a complexion booster so if a client is asking for nice glowy skin you can bet that they have this all over their face. I currently just have shades 1, 3 and 5 but plan on expanding because it’s just SUCH a beautiful product.

Foundations
I have a hard time committing to one foundation. Like I have a few variations in my kit but can never decide if I want to just have one type of foundation to keep it simple or to cover my back have a few different formulas.
All my foundations are Mac Cosmetics, I trust them and I know how to work with them. I can make them thicker, make them lighter and I know they work well with the primers.
If you are just starting out, to save on expenses get familiar with the foundations you are interested in and get a few colours that you can mix to suit everyone but, please get a shade to suit darker tones. You don’t want to get caught out and not have the right shade for someone!

I have Studio Fix in probably too many shades… Pro Longwear as well as Face & Body. These foundations see me through every type of make up that people want, whether they want something sheer, full coverage, matte or dewy I have got you covered.

Concealer

I have tried concealer after concealer and the best one that I have tried that suits a wide variety of people is the Make Up Revolution Conceal & Define Concealer, £4. Now, there are SO many different colours which is amazing for a brand to have but it doesn’t mean you need to own all of them. One of the key things about being a Make Up Artist is that you need to make do with what you have so just aim to have something light, medium and dark at first. Then you can add to your collection.

Contour
Contour isn’t something that I do on everyone so I don’t see the need in having loads of products for contouring and highlighting so sticking to the basics is key. I am in love with the Technic Cosmetics Colour Fix Cream & Powder Palettes which retail for £6 online but you can grab it cheaper in stores. I recently picked up a few in Franklins for £2.40!
They are great not only from a price point of view but genuinely really good products! I used to use the Anastasia Beverly Hills which are amazing of course too, but I don’t seen too much of a difference to warrant paying £42 compared to £6 or less!

Powder
Loose powder is just a no go for me for generic make ups. They are messy, they get all over your kit and are annoying. I am all about the pressed powder life. Charlotte Tilbury Airbrush Flawless Finish Powder, £34 gets my vote every single time and I carry all 3 shades. It is the most perfect powder, I am in love. I actually get excited for the powder stage to watch the powder work it’s magic. It effortlessly sweeps over pores, making the skin look super smooth without looking too ‘powdery’ and ensures an all day lasting finish.

I wouldn’t dream of changing the powder in my kit but I do also have the Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder, £3.99 which is what I used before – to have just in case.

Bronzer
I have a bit of an obsession with bronzer so when you look at my kit this is probably the one messy, unorganised – still in a clear zip bag though – part of my kit. I find new bronzers from different brands and just die over them and I always end up buying two of each. One for me, one for the kit.

I would be lost without my Nars ‘Laguna’, Mac ‘Give Me Sun’ as well as a few other Mineralize Skinfinish’s and my Chanel Soleil de Tan. I do however have Make Up For Ever Pro Bronze Fusion, £30 bronzers in all shades so I know I have at least one bronzer to suit everyone but I can’t stop buying new ones…

Highlighter
For being highlighter obsessed, I am surprised I haven’t got more in my kit. For cream highlighter is just has to be my Charlotte Tilbury Beauty Light Wand ‘Spotlight’, £29.
Powder highlight I tend to go between my BPerfect Mmmmitchell Sub Zero, £32.99 as it is all in a handy palette and plenty of colours to suit different tones. However, I tend to reach for a Mac palette that I curated myself of my favourite Mac Extra Dimension Skinfinish, £25.50 shades ‘Oh Darling’, ‘Whisper of Gilt’ ‘Doubleglam’ and ‘Show Gold.’ De potting them and

Blush
I love blush. One thing I learned was that one blush doesn’t suit everyone. So I have a wide variety of blushers as I find it’s what awakens up a make up and transforms a persons complexion.

I have created Mac palettes as I love the inserts that you can buy that fit 6 blushers in a palette. It makes life so much easier when packing up a kit as there is already so much to pack! I definitely use these the most as they sit so well on top of the other products I use. My favourites and most used are Peaches, Swiss Chocolate, Fleur Power & Melba.

I do also have a few of the Milani Baked Blushers, £10 and Charlotte Tilbury Beach Sticks, £30 as I love these on more mature clients! They give a beautiful glow to the skin without looking dry or caked.

Brows
I am a creature of habit for eyebrows and I like to do a certain style. Of course, on request I will do whatever the client wishes but I like to use pencils and brow gels. I try and stay as far away from thick gels or pomades as much as possible.

I couldn’t possibly use any other brow pencil than the Mac Eyebrow Stylers, £15 they are perfection. They last for ages, are twist up which I love and have really great colours. I do love the NYX Micro Brow Pencils, £9 which are a great alternative!

In terms of brow gel, one of my favourite Charlotte Tilbury products of all time are the Legendary Brow Gels, £18.50. They fluff the hairs up perfectly without looking too fake and ensure that it stays all day.

Eyeshadow
I have gone through many phases of eyeshadow in my kit, from carrying what felt like a hundred single eyeshadows to carrying a hundred palettes. I have since downgraded the palettes I bring with me and keep it as simple as I can. I have my favourite bridal type palettes and my weekend palettes and they seem to cover me for just about everything.
I mainly use
BPerfect Carnival Palette, £39.99 – I cannot remember what I did before this palette came along. Seriously.
– Urban Decay Naked Ultimate Basics Palette
– Mac Cosmetics Palettes that I have made – I live for these
– Mac Cosmetics Pigments, Doll Beauty Pigments, Urban Decay Glitter Liners & Helen E Glitters (these are everything)

Eyeliners
I love gel liner and try to use it above liquid liner when I can. I find it lasts longer and I don’t have to worry about it crumbling. I have a few favourites but I always tend to opt for Inglot’s Gel Liners and I have quite a few colours – you just don’t know what someone will ask for! 77 (Black) and 96 (Brown) are among my most used and of course Inglot’s Duraline is never too far away in case they dry out a little. Side note – if you haven’t purchased Duraline before, I highly recommend you try it. It has so many amazing purposes, but I especially love it for mixing with gel liner.

Mascara
I don’t really worry about the mascara I use as not only do I have the disposable mascara wands but most people want eyelashes applied. I love the Max Factor False Lash Effect Mascara, £10.99and this is generally what I’ll have, unless I have received little mini mascaras which are so handy for your kit! Anytime I am buying anything at a make up counter I always ask for mascara samples – if you don’t ask you don’t get!

False Eyelashes
I love all eyelashes, even the most strangely theatrical and dramatic lashes. That being said, typically I am working on bridal party make ups so I aim to keep my lashes on the more natural and fluffy side.
I use individual lashes a lot either on their on or on top of strip lashes and I love the Eylure Individual Lashes as you get small, medium and long lashes in the one box as the majority of other brands you have to buy a whole box of the same size.

For strip lashes, I have Ardell Demi Wispies as you can buy them in packs, so it saves you a little money! I change up my lashes each time depending on what’s on offer but I always go back to the Ardell’s.

Lip Liners
Mac. Rimmel. Charlotte Tilbury. No others will do! I pick up the odd lip liner from other brands here and there but I just use them on myself, I love these brands of lip liners for the kit as they are great on everyone.

I love Mac due to the colour range, Rimmel’s are super creamy and so great on maturer clients and Charlotte Tilbury just because, they are Charlotte Tilbury. Most used/highly recommended shades:
Nude Mac ‘Spice’ & ‘Boldly Bare’ | Rimmel ‘Tiramisu’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Hot Gossip’ & ‘Iconic Nude’
Pink Mac ‘Soar’ & ‘Edge to Edge’ |Rimmel ‘Eastend Snob’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Pillowtalk’ & ‘Pink Venus’
Red Mac ‘Cherry’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Kiss n Tell’
Plum Mac ‘Nightmoth’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Bad Romance’ & ‘Love Trap’

Lipsticks
Similar to the lip liners I have the lipstick in shades to match. I’ll admit, I have an unholy amount of lipsticks but to make it easier to carry I have depotted them and melted them down into palettes. You can get empty lipstick palettes from anywhere but mine are from Mac £2, of course!

Most used/highly recommended shades:
Nude Mac ‘Honeylove’ & ‘Viva Glam II’ & ‘Peachstock’ | Tom Ford ‘Sable Smoke’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Kim KW’ & ‘Pillowtalk’
Pink Mac ‘Creme Cup’ & ‘Snob’ | Estee Lauder ‘Desirable’ & ‘Powerful’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Liv It Up’ & ‘Velvet Underground’
Red Mac ‘So Chaud’ & ‘Ruby Woo’ | Estee Lauder ‘Envious’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Walk of Shame’ & ‘So Marilyn’
Plum Mac ‘Rebel’ | Tom Ford ‘Casablanca’ | Estee Lauder ‘Irresistible’ | Charlotte Tilbury ‘Love Liberty’

Lip Glosses

I don’t have a whole pile of lip glosses in my kit as I tend to use clear or light glosses over lipsticks. I have recently started using Charlotte Tilbury ‘Collagen Lip Bath’, £25 on everyone as it makes the lips look unbelievably plumped and full as well as deliciously glossy! I have a few odd coloured glosses from all over the place but I use the Lip Bath most often.

Setting Sprays


NYX Matte & Dewy Setting Sprays, £7 are my go to, I love them! For anyone who is oily of course gets the matte spray which helps to tone down shine. Anyone who is dry, yes you guessed it – they get the dewy spray. I recently started using the Iconic London Setting Sprays, £20.50 but they are extremely dewy and only for those that like a good glow!

This was believe it or not, a quick overview of what is in my kit. If you have any questions about anything I use or if you use something in your kit for clients I would love to hear about it – maybe it’s something I could use myself!

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Amy xo








Top 5 Face Creams for Normal/Dry Skin

Here we are again, another instalment in my Top 5 series where I, yes you guessed it, list my top 5 products in a category. Skincare is a tricky one to get advice on over the internet so I would always recommend that if you are looking a new serum or moisturiser, etc to go in and visit your local store and get some samples or more information from the guys and gals that work there. Everyone’s skin is so so different and can change on the regular and so these creams may. be my favourite creams, they may not work for you. That being said, I am obsessed with all of these and would definitely recommend them for anyone with skin similar to mine!

Kiehl’s Ultra Face Cream

If you follow me on Instagram it is no secret that I love this cream. It’s relatively affordable, I would say middle of the road price. It’s a wonderfully light cream so for those of you who don’t like anything too thick or heavy then this one is perfect for you! With 24 hour hydration this cream is perfect for dryer skin types but is perfect for everyone. For me personally, I just love how this product feels, it melts onto my skin and leaves my skin looking nice and healthy. It’s one of the products that Make Up by Mario swears by and uses it on his clients before makeup. For that reason I now have a tub that lives in my kit, if it’s good enough for Kim it’s good enough for me. You can also get it with SPF30 – I use the one without in my kit as we don’t want flashback!

Available in 28ml for £16, 50ml for £24.50 and 125ml for £45

Charlotte Tilbury Magic Cream

Well, what can I say about this multi award winning, fantastic, loved my models and celebrities, luscious, gorgeous and hydrating cream? It has genuinely changed up my skincare regime for the better and if I HAD to pick it would probably be named my ultimate favourite. It’s the cream that I know I can trust and that it’s going to do exactly what it says on the tin.
The cream itself it packed to the gills with Hyaluronic Acid which is going to seal and lock in that moisture leaving your skin supple and dewy. Vitamin E makes dull and tired skin happy and healthy while Vitamin C brightens and evens complexion.

Charlotte first curated her ‘magic’ cream when she was working backstage and doing makeup for models. Think of models skin, yes they are gorgeous but they are busy, up late, at that time perhaps didn’t have the best diet, etc so that has an effect on their skin. Charlotte created something that she knew would completely transform them before they got their make up on and so, this cream is the ultimate backstage secret product to make your skin Hollywood ready.

Available in 30ml for £49, 50ml for £70 and 150ml for £180

Estee Lauder Re Nutriv Ultimate Diamond Transformative Energy Creme Rich

24. Karat. Gold. That’s what is in this cream. I mean, a whole host of other things too, but when I use this cream I feel so smug because I am essentially rubbing gold on myself. Plus, the gold adds radiance, so winning. This cream is so velvety and I swear it changes the texture of your skin immediately. Black Diamond Truffle extract helps to firm skin, ticking the boxes for any of you that are concerned with ageing. If you have the chance to try out this cream – or any of the other products in this range you should take it, they are outstanding. Also, it comes with a gold spoon so you can spoon out the exact amount that you need for you face… like, hello? How extra!

Available in 50ml for £280

Elizabeth Arden 8 Hour Cream, £28

This cream is my OG, original, first ‘proper’ face cream I ever used. It was life changing and every now and then I always go back to it. As well as the Kiehls, it lives in my kit for clients as it’s perfect for the body, cuticles and works wonders for dry lips – just don’t lick it or swallow it!
Elizabeth Arden got the name ‘Eight Hour’ from a die hard client who used the cream on a child’s grazed sore knee and eight hours later it was magically better! So if it can help a child’s knee, it can help my dry face!

No secret that I have dry skin, but every so often my redness in the centre of my face and cheeks flares up and that’s when I pull out this cream for my face. It is amazing at calming down my lil rosy cheeks and I find it really soothing! The fact it’s so versatile makes it a shoo-in for my Top 5.

Available in 50ml for £28

La Roche-Posay Nutritic Intense Riche

The odd time my skin can be sore, especially in Winter when the harsh elements irritate the skin. If this happens to you or you have skin that is easily irritated then look no further than this intense cream. It is so comforting and soothing and doesn’t sting when it is applied. You know that tight skin feeling when you get out of a really hot shower? If your skin feels like that then this cream will be perfect for you.

Available in 50ml for £16.50

What are you go to face creams? I would love to hear and maybe try them out myself. As always, you can follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

If you like this Top 5, click here to view other posts in the series

Game of Thrones Belfast Exhibition

Today I was invited to the media press conference for the Game of Thrones Touring Exhibition which is situated in the TEC Belfast which as of tomorrow – Thursday 11th April – will be open to the public.

I am a long time fan of Game of Thrones, having read the books before the TV Show was even a thing and oh my GOD, I enjoyed this exhibition so much. Whether you are a super fan or haven’t even watched the show, I can guarantee you will enjoy walking around this exhibition. If you haven’t watched it, this exhibition will make you want to watch it! From King’s Landing to the Kingsroad, from the North to Castle Black you can immerse yourself in these fantastic props and memorabilia from one of the world’s most loved TV shows.

Before we viewed the exhibition we were introduced to the fantastic panel who answered all of our burning questions, unfortunately none about season 8! We had before us our very own Northern Irish gem, Ian Beattie who played the devilish Set Meryn Trant. We had Isaac Hempsted Wright who of course, plays Bran Stark who spoke very well and expressed a great love for his time in Northern Ireland. Our third cast member was the one and only Liam Cunningham who plays the one and only See Davos Seaworth. I’ll not lie to you, I was a little starstruck listening to these fantastic actors talking right in front of me, but I managed to keep it together and not squeal.

I was very excited to hear from Michele Clapton who is a costume designer for Game of Thrones – Emmy award winning thank you very much. The clothing and intricate designs are one of my favourite things about Game of Thrones. Even during the busiest of scenes I love looking at what they are wearing! I wanted to be in the show just so that Michele can make me a super fancy dress.

Walking around the exhibition and seeing all those costumes and outfits in real life I didn’t realise just how intricate they all are. They are absolutely beautiful and I can only imagine how long it takes to make those pieces. When asked about it Michele said it could take anywhere from 5 days to 5 weeks and even longer to make just one costume. Which is insane! I don’t want to spoil what you can see there but I just want to leave some of my favourite clothing items from the exhibition.

Varys’ outfits are up there with my favourites because again, the attention to detail is just insane. Michele had mentioned that because Varys has all the whispers and all the secrets, for that reason his hands are always covered. With his hands in his sleeves, it creates an air of mystery and I always feel like Varys is hiding something! He is so mysterious!

Now, let’s discuss Daenerys. Yes she is the reason I dyed my hair platinum blonde and wore plaits. Yes, she is awesome and yes, she is an absolute boss! She’s not necessarily my favourite character but her story line in the show is my favourite. What she goes through and what she has to handle, makes her iconic and of course, she’s going to need some iconic clothing to match!

I think it’s pretty safe to say that the White Walkers are absolutely petrifying. That cold, icy skin and those pale blue eyes that could cut you in two as soon as look at you. I near jumped out of my skin walking through and seeing this figure in the exhibition.

One of the best things about this exhibition was that you can actually have your face put into the Hall of Faces like in Season 5.

Weird, but I like it.

I absolutely loved this exhibition and I don’t doubt that I will be back again soon! You can check out the website here and you can buy your tickets from here

Tickets
April – May
Monday – Thursday: £15
Friday – Sunday: £17.50
June – August
Monday – Sunday: £17.50

If I Was A Rich Girl… na na na na na na

If you didn’t read the title of this post to Gwen Stefani’s Rich Girl you have to exit now. Seriously.

This is a list of things that if I were a rich girl, I would certainly be popping out and buying. These are things that are on my Wishlist and at some point I will own. Some people like saving for holidays or saving for like, life and stuff but me? I enjoy designer things that are pretty and are expensive. Let me live. I will also direct everyone who ever needs to buy me a present to this post.

Gucci Jordaan Loafer, £540

At the rate I go through shoes this would probably not be a wise investment however, I don’t care. I have bought enough of the H&M dupes of these shoes that I probably would have been able to afford the real deal. I love a brogue, they can be styled so easily and worn with any and every outfit. I will have these, with fur and without. One day…

Gucci GG Marmont Matelassé Shoulder Bag, £1690

I legit just want this because it’s a cute, black, leather bag that is a good size. Do you know how hard it is to find a black bag that can fit all your makeup, phone and purse and still goes over your shoulder? Yeah, it’s probably easier than I think but I still want this bag. Plus, Gucci Gang Gucci Gang Gucci Gang.

Vivienne Westwood Star Orb Pendant Gold, £245

So, I am not one for jewellery. I am Joel’s worst nightmare when it comes to Christmas and Birthday presents because any piece of jewellery just isn’t going to excite me. I wear the same rings and rarely wear necklaces because they aren’t dainty enough. However, I just adore Vivienne Westwood’s jewellery, the pieces are both understated and eccentric and I love it! I love the earrings too, I have a pair of studs that I wore to death but this necklace is next on my list!

Valentino Garavani Patent Rockstud Caged Pump 100mm, £650

When I worked with Estee Lauder, I went with them to New York and of course, I went to Saks Fifth Avenue. I was walking around and all of a sudden, a glimmer caught my eye and I was drawn towards these shoes. These beautiful Valentinos, so gorgeous and shiny and I wanted them so bad! I couldn’t afford them and I genuinely think about them all the time. Nude are of course, my favourite but I would settle for any colour!

Chanel Long Necklace – Metal, Glass Pearls & Diamantés, £1260

Remember when I said I liked understated jewellery? Well, that was clearly a lie. There may not be anything understated about this Chanel piece but I am dying to live out my Andy Sachs Devil Were Prada fantasy with a Chanel necklace. The point is, if I had the money I would 100% buy this. I would buy two.

That’s all for now, but there are plenty of other things that I would love… I will no doubt constantly update this wishlist. What goodies are on your wishlist, I would love to know!

How To Make Tired Eyes Seem Brighter

I don’t know about you guys, but my eyes are permanently exhausted – and I don’t even have children! I am sick of looking at my eyes and wishing that they weren’t so battered looking. I have compiled my favourite products and some tips to beating those tired eyes and getting rid of those bags!

Be smart with your eyeliner
Whether you are using black, brown or a colour it shouldn’t matter so much, the trick is all in where it goes. Applying too much eyeliner underneath the eyes can actually enhance how dark the eye area is as opposed to covering it up. Rather than applying darker liners in the waterline instead bring them further underneath the eye and smudge it into the lash line so it’s not so harsh.
My favourite thing to put in the waterline instead is the Charlotte Tilbury Rock n Kohl ‘Eye Cheat’, £19. It is a universal nude tone which literally cheats the eyes into looking wider, fuller and more awake. I have had pencils like these before but they have never been the right colour, all being either too white so you look like a crazed doll or too rose tone so that you look a little ill. Charlotte has created the perfect tone to neutralise the waterline creating a rested look.

Step up your eye cream game
If it’s darkness you are trying to prevent or fix then look no further than eye creams containing Vitamin C. A hydrating eye cream that is powered by Vitamin C will brighten the look of under eyes and in turn, reduce the appearance of dark circles. My personal favourite is the Drunk Elephant C Tango Multivitamin Eye Cream, £54. The obsession is real with this eye cream, I have noticed a change in my under eyes after only a few days and I’m in love. This rich and restorative eye cream features a blend of eight peptides, five forms of Vitamin C and cucumber extract for firmer, stronger looking eyes. My eyes just feel SO hydrated when I use this cream, I can feel the product working, definitely worth the price!

Conceal, conceal, conceal
A concealer is never too far away from me. I seem to have one in my handbag, in my makeup bag and generally in my hand at the make up counter where I work. I love concealer – when used right. When looking at our eyes and how dark and tired they might be, the majority of us will go straight for the quick fix which is the concealer. Knowing how to apply your concealer correctly will make all the difference. Less. Is. More. Instead of sweeping your concealer right the way across your under eye trying to cover everything, try applying it from the inner corner, down alongside the nose and whatever is left pat over across to the outer corner of the eye. This will cover the correct areas without leaving you feeling heavy and caked in product.

Finding the right concealer for you is a whole other ball game as there are so many out there with so many difference textures and finishes. The best way to know what you like is deciding on the kind of texture you like and take it from there. For me, I love something creamy in texture making it easy to blend without being too heavy. With this in mind I tend to avoid anything that comes from a pot or a stick as these products tend to be thicker. My go to concealer is the Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer, I have discussed this concealer on my blog before as it featured in my Top 5 Concealers post. This is the only concealer that I seem to constantly repurchase, I try other ones and I think ‘Yea, they were nice but let’s see what else there is.’ Whereas in the Maybelline concealer I trust.

Mask it up
We are all so busy that we can forget to take the time out to look after ourselves. One of my favourite ways to make sure that I am looking after my eye area, and general wellbeing is making sure that I treat myself to a mask. Even while sitting watching your favourite TV programme, pop on an eye mask and you can guarantee that you will feel better and look more awake. I use the Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Concentrated Recovery Eye Masks, 4 pack £38. Pop them on at night, after a long day and leave them on for around 10 minutes and your eyes will be refreshed and hydrated. I notice that my eyes look a little more radiant after using them, and if anything they just feel great!

I have also used the Garnier Eye Sheet Mask with Hyaluronic Acid and Orange Juice, £2.99 which are great for a daytime burst of revitalisation. These are ideal if you are heading somewhere during the day and you want to look your absolute best! I have a wedding to go to soon and you best believe I will have these on before I get my make up done. Plus, they smell nice.

What do you guys like to do for your tired eyes? Or are you blessed with perfect eyes? I would love to hear what you do!
You can follow me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube

Amy xo

I Joined A Gym

I did it, I finally joined a proper gym. For a few months I attended a gym probably once a month and pissed my money down the drain as I was unhappy and still ate the same old shite instead of eating better and healthier. Fast forward to 2019 and it wasn’t so much a New Year’s Resolution as I don’t totally believe in them, as it was so much that I just woke up one day and thought ‘let’s do this.’

Some people will tell you that they looked in the mirror one day and couldn’t stand the sight of themselves so they decided to join a gym and get fit. Some people will stare at fitness accounts on instagram and join to look like them. Some people genuinely love fitness and therefore being a member of the gym is a given. For me, I didn’t have a revolutionary moment or a love for fitness and I tended to stay away from those fitness accounts on insta. I just woke up and decided that if I wanted a happier, healthier lifestyle then I had to make some changes.

Anytime Fitness gym opened up less than a 10 minute walk from my house and so I thought that that was perfect as then I would have no excuse to get there. I went to check out the gym and upon entering I was greeted with the nicest, most welcoming smile I have probably ever experienced. I had been a little scared before I went because I thought ‘Oh God, they are going to judge me because I am bigger than them.’ Legit the opposite.

I was shown around and told how each machine worked and was reassured that if I needed any help at all then I could just ask. I found this to be alien as in Pure Gym no-one spoke to me. After a few days I was starting to get into a routine and kind of enjoying it when I thought about looking in to Personal Training. I have had a personal trainer before but didn’t take it seriously enough and he never got me excited or motivated to come back for the next session.

Things could not be more different this time around. Ryan Spence was introduced to me via the gym and while I am still extremely new to this lifestyle – 2 weeks to be exact – I have never in my life felt happier and more confident. Ryan booked me in for a consultation (£30) where we basically had a casual chat and taking into account what I do for a living and my normal habits and past experiences he curated a plan for me. He is so informative and every session I learn something new, which I love! I want to know why I am doing these exercises and why I am eating these things so that if I stop going to a Personal Trainer I’ll be able to handle it on my own.

With my previous trainer he didn’t sit with me and take an interest in my eating which at the time I didn’t worry about but now I don’t know how a PT wouldn’t check in on your diet. Ryan did so much more than just check in on my diet, he worked out my macro splits and even put them into My Fitness Pal for me.

I’m still in the early stages of this path but the point is I am now one of those people I hated. Those ones that were happy all the time and took photos of themselves in the gym. Cringe. I can’t help it, I am one of them and now proud to be. Anyone that gives me shit in my DMs are just jealous and haven’t had their ‘let’s do this’ moment yet.

In case you are interested in pricing for Ryan Spence and the gym – if you’re local then you can check it out below.

One Off Consultant Fee – £30
One Session – £30
10 Sessions (2 Minimum Per Week) – £250
15 Sessions (3 Minimum Per Week) – £300

And if you want to train with someone

One Session – £50
10 Sessions (2 Minimum Per Week) – £400
15 Sessions (3 Minimum Per Week) – £525

I plan on documenting updating you on my progress, if you are interested then you can follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

You can also follow Anytime Fitness on Instagram here

If you are into fitness or have recently started a healthier journey I would love to hear from you!

Top Topshop Picks

Topshop is one of those shops that I have always loved and seem to never be able to afford but still end up spending half my wage every month. I actually ended up getting a job in Topshop years ago and when asked why I wanted to work there my answer was to pay off my Topshop credit card. Amazingly, I was hired. Spring/Summer is one of my favourite times of year in terms of fashion because you can still get away with wearing your gorgeous Winter finds and pair them with what’s coming out next. I love being in between seasons!

Anyway, Topshop have some beautiful pieces in at the minute and I thought I would share my favourite bits.

Coats

Relaxed Coat, £59

I have been dying for the coat for ages but my size isn’t online and not in stores. Topshop sort it OUT! Anyway, this just looks super comfy and I am lacking in ‘throw it on’ coats. You know those coats that go with everything that you throw on? Yeah, it’s one of them.

Belted Trench Coat, £69

I love trench coats and the colour of this coat is just stunning! I have a wooden orange coat from Topshop years ago and I wore it all the time, it just added something to each outfit and I was so wary of it when I bought because I thought I would never wear the colour. I was so shocked at how many outfits it went with! So I may just have to purchase this beauty!

Tops

Satin Shirt, £32

I love my Topshop shirts, they are the most amazing quality and last for so long. I still have Topshop shirts that I got years ago and they still look as good as new. I have my eye on this one as it will go with lots of little trousers I have picked up recently. Plus, I want a salmon shirt so I can be like Ross in Friends.

Suits/Co-Ords

Wide Pinstrip Suit, £111

If you know me at all you’ll know that I am an absolute sucker for a co ord. I don’t know what it is, but when I don a co order I immediately feel like the ultimate boss lady. I spotted this suit recently on Melissa Elliott and I just have to have it. At some point. If I bring home any more suits I think my boyfriend might make me move out.

Asymmetric Blue Suit, £79

Not only do I want this suit, I want the hair and the red lip to match. I am living for the pastel colours recently and they look so good, especially this time of the year.

Jumpsuits

Jacquard Jumpsuit, £55

Gimmie it. I want it. Gimmie it. I want it. I would have bought this by now only for I seem to have bought a lot of green items recently… but I want it.

Dresses

Geo Border Tie Neck Dress, £49

I absolutely love this dress! I am all for a clashing of prints this season, and this dress is the perfect Segway in to the trend. As soon as I seen this online I just had to order it. I love the front of it as for chesty, booby people like myself it sits really comfortably and not too tight. This will be coming with me next week for a trip to Liverpool!

Teal Animal Print Shirt Dress, £49

Another recent purchase, similar style dress to the previous one but I just love the subtle play on animal print. Animal print is here to stay but I am living for the understated hints rather than the loud prints at the minute. When I put it on, I lost my waist in the dress a little so I put a belt around it and it just nips you in in all the right places. I have paired this dress with these gorgeous Topshop Boots – see below. Also available in a shirt if you didn’t want a whole dress!

Boots

Babe Block Heel Ankle Boots, £29

Comfiest. Boots. Ever. Every other pair of Topshop boots I have had have been a nightmare to break in, these were just automatically super comfy. I love the colour of them, and they are on offer too! So that helps!

MARIO Western Boots, £89

So, I have yet to buy a pair of western boots. This trend has been around for awhile now and I don’t know why I have been sleeping on this but these boots caught my eye as soon as they came out. There’s just something about spending £89 on a pair of black boots when I own at least 15 pairs of black boots already. That being said, I am sure I will crack soon and end up buying them.

Have you bought any of the items in my Topshop Top Picks/Wishlist, or are they on your wishlist too? I would love to hear! You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube!

Make Up Wishlist

Does anyone else spend hours browsing through Instagram or Facebook and see gorgeous makeup pictures or stunning flat lays or products and think ‘ooh, I want that.’ Well, I do constantly. Even though I am a makeup artist with a fair bit of makeup in my drawers and kit, I still see things and I can’t help but add them to my wishlist.

My beauty wishlist is a list of products that I wouldn’t normally just go out and buy and I save them, for days where maybe I am feeling a little down, I’ve had a bad day and I want to cheer myself up. Or I have had a really good day and I want to treat myself. I mean, there’s really plenty of excuses we can come up with for buying makeup. Anyway, here’s what’s on my list and if anyone wants to treat me to them then please feel free!

Melt Cosmetics Dark Matter Eyeshadow Stack, £40

Melt Cosmetics, made known to me via Instagram had always seemed so unavailable to me until very recently. Good old Beauty Bay have started stocking them and I shrieked with happiness. Yet for some reason I still haven’t bit the bullet and bought them. Maybe one day… I also have my eye on the Rust stack, they look like such beautiful colours and to be honest, anything Jamie Genevieve touches basically goes straight to my wish list.

Flower Beauty Supernova Celestial Skin Elixir Primer, £14.99

Ever since I watched Santa Clarita Diet on Netflix I just had to know what Drew Barrymore was using on her skin because good Lord she looks unreal. She literally looks so amazing. I don’t know how I didn’t know this then but she has her own beauty brand called Flower Beauty. I remember thinking ‘oh I must research this brand more sometime’ and put it on a list somewhere and never did. Enter Jamie Genevieve’s YouTube video with Drew Barrymore where they used her products. I was hooked from the get go. The way Drew talked about her skin elixir and the love she had for it, sold it to me there and then. Her brand is now available in Superdrug so this one will be getting purchase very soon I feel. You can watch Jamie & Drew’s video here.

Benefit Roller Liner, £18.50

I’m a sucker for a hyped up launch and Benefit are no stranger to such a thing. I have been sucked into every mascara they’ve launched and haven’t been overly excited by them but this, this I am excited to try. This is normally something I wouldn’t think twice about buying then and there but I promised myself I wouldn’t buy any more liquid liners until some of the ones I have run out. I seriously have about 7 on the go at the minute. A quick dry, waterproof, 24 hour lasting liner that’s matte?! Yes please.  I’ll take two.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brushes

So, I have a love hate relationship with make up brushes. I have so many but as a Make UP Artist, you honestly just cannot have enough and it bugs me buying so many. So I hate that, but there’s nothing as satisfying as having a brush that perfectly executes a product. I recently attended a MMMMitchel Masterclass with BPerfect Cosmetics and he mentioned a few of his favourite brushes. Naturally they have gone straight onto the wishlist. The A25 Tapered Blending Brush, £24 is a beautiful looking brush that I can’t wait to finally buy! The A23 Illuminator Brush, £26 is a beautiful highlighter brush but can also be used underneath the eyes for setting powder.

BUXOM Cosmetics Full On Plumping Lip Polish, £15

Literally any and every shade is on the wish list. I love lip gloss and am so glad to see the back of matte lipsticks for awhile. I have heard so many amazing things about BUXOM’s lip products. These lip gloss are plumping as well so there’s an added bonus of your lips looking nice and full. I love the look of the shades ‘Princess‘ so it could be the first purchased…

Farsali Unicorn Essence, £50

You know all those Instagram videos where these beautiful girls with gorgeous skin do the weird thing where they drip serum down their face instead of just putting in on their fingers and applying? Yeah, they do it with this and I want it. Another elixir on the list I know but I still want to try it. This serum primer hybrid product completely took the beauty world by storm and I have FOMO.

Iconic London Prep – Set – Glow, £18.50

One look at these sprays and my eyes light up. Not only does this set makeup but you can use it to refresh the skin while it moisturises and leave you with an insane glow. I had sprayed this once when it first launched and I have never regretted not buying something as much as I do this spray because it’s been insanely popular since and haven’t managed to get my hands on it. The mist contains a mix of cucumber and chamomile as well as antioxidant-rich green tea and vitamin E – and even a burst of revitalising caffeine! What’s not to want?

I would love to know if you have tried any of these products or what beauty products are on your wish list? Let me know your thoughts.

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.


Top 5 Lip Liners

The elusive lip liner – made famous to the younger generation courtesy of the Kardashians. Lip liners were the go to product for years until all of a sudden, the Noughties came along and we forgot the effect a lip liner can have. I blame the Nineties and that horrendously dark lip liner paired with a nude lipstick trend, maybe we had enough of lip liner after that.

Working on a beauty counter I do get hit with the ‘do you really need one?’ and ‘does it really make a difference?’ questions. The answer is yes. Lip liner not only completely reforms the look of your lips cheating them into looking bigger and fuller, but also helps to keep your lipstick on without bleeding out of the lines. There are that many cosmetic products on the market now that it can be hard to know which ones are best, so I have put together a list of my die hard favourite lip liners to ensure that you are using the best.

Charlotte Tilbury Lip Cheat, £16

Home of the Pillowtalk Lip Pencil & Lipstick, Charlotte Tilbury goes straight to the top of the list for the best lip liner. The Lip Cheat formula is so creamy that it just glides onto the area of the lip, whether you have more mature skin or younger skin this lip liner will be perfect for you. With more mature skin, lip liners can pull on the lips making it uncomfortable to apply, but this texture glides on for an effortless application. My go to liners from Charlotte Tilbury are of course, the ‘Pillowtalk’ itself for the most perfect everyday pink nude and for more of a brown tone ‘Hot Gossip’ is one of my new favourites. A must for your makeup bag.

Mac Lip Pencil, £14

Mac Cosmetics are no stranger when it comes to topping beauty lists for having some of the best products on the market. Their lip liners are no exception. These are one of my favourites because no matter which colour I pick up, the formula holds up and have a truly amazing colour payoff. Usually darker plums or reds can be different formulas to master but Mac have it nailed and they are again, a must for the makeup bag. I wouldn’t be without the classic ‘Spice’, a beautiful nude perfect for a wide variety of lipsticks or my ‘Cherry’ red pencil. Cherry is thee red, my go to for that Marilyn Monroe, postbox, siren red lip colour that usually only comes out of hibernation at Christmas time. There are so many colours to choose from that it may be wise to bring the lipstick with you that you are looking to match.

Rimmel Exaggerate Lip Pencil, £3.99

Creamy. Rich. Pigmented. Affordable. I really don’t need to say much more about these lip liners other than that because they are truly amazing for £3.99. To be honest, I have said for awhile that I would pay double, triple even for those lip liners. They last so well and personally I find it really difficult to find nice, affordable lip liners that don’t feel like pencils you used to write with in Primary School. I see clients look at those liners in my kit and think ‘seriously…’ but they are great! ‘Eastend Snob’ is my favourite pink liner of all time. I think it’s so difficult to find a nice pink liner that isn’t too nude or peach. If you’re looking a nice pink liner then this one is perfect for you! It’s a twist up too so saves you having to sharpen!

Estee Lauder Double Wear Lip Pencil, £18.50

One of the first high end lip liners I had ever bought, these have remained one of my favourites in my makeup bag over the last lot of years. The liners glide on easily giving precise definition giving you control without flying too far over the edge. Yes, these pencils are a little on the pricier side but they do come with a lip brush on the other end allowing you even more of a precise application. These liners last all day, even outliving the lipsticks you wear them with, so there’s no worry of them coming off! My favourite shades in this range are ‘Mauve’ and ‘Rose’ perfect nude shades that perfectly compliment every skin tone. As a Make Up Artist I always have a few of these colours in my kit.

Boots No. 7 Precision Lips Pencil, £7

I have amassed a good few of these lip liners in my time, whether it’s because I always have a No.7 voucher or it’s because they are regularly on 3 for 2 I don’t know, but I love them. Moisturising and soft, these liners are easy applied and are also long lasting. They are again a twist up style of liner but what I love is these come with a built in sharpener! No.7 Lip Pencils are super pigmented, so definitely invest if you are looking a nice strong lip colour, because they are so moisturising they work really well all over the lips which keeps you lipstick on for even longer.

I would love to know what your favourite lip liners are, or whether you even use lip liners.

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Lip Fillers | Therapie Clinic Belfast

Hello gorgeous readers,

If you have been following me and my ramblings for awhile now you’ll probably know that I got lip fillers a little under a year ago now and I absolutely love them. Whether you are for or against cosmetic work, fillers or whatever – I believe that if it makes you feel better then who cares what anyone else thinks. That’s my standpoint on it, thought I would just get that out of the way. If you don’t like them, then thank u, next. You can read about my first experience with fillers here.

This time I went to Therapie Clinic, a clinic that is widely known throughout the UK for it’s amazing service, great deals and great locations. My local Therapie Clinic is on Ann Street, Belfast. From the moment I walked in I felt welcomed and was greeted with friendly faces, I felt as if I was walking into a friends home. Upon arrival and after giving my name, I was asked if I was there to see the doctor and asked to fill out a form.

I was taken into a beautifully clean room and the doctor was so lovely and friendly again, I felt completely at ease. I got up on the bed and the doctor had a really good look ay my lips, asked me lots of questions about what way I like them, what style of lips I like and how big I would envision them being.

The same way as I explained the last time I got my lips done, I said that I didn’t want that ducky style of lip. I don’t like that really obvious ‘I’ve just had my lips done’ look, which sounds stupid considering I am about to get them. I like lips where you look at someone and you like ‘have they or haven’t they?’ Basically nothing TOWIE or Pete Burns. I had 1ml of filler the last time I got them done and I had it in my head that I would just get 1ml of filler in again, but after talking to the doctor she had a little feel and was able to tell me that there was still a good bit of filler left and that she would only recommend a 0.5ml. I was sceptical as I had wanted 1ml but damn am I glad she only put in 0.5ml. I can’t recommend enough to listen to the professionals when they are telling you what’s best because if I had have asked for the 1ml I would have crazy lips right now. They are the professionals for a reason, please do your research wherever you go and I am so happy with my results and couldn’t recommend Therapie enough.

As well as talking to me and keeping me relaxed, she gave me a little stress ball, which I thought was a really nice touch. I don’t find it an overly sore or painful procedure but if you are somewhat squeamish or uncomfortable then this will be great for you – better than someone’s hand for sure.

Before

After

Later That Night – Don’t panic, the swelling goes down after a day or two! I was so stressed the first time I got them done, I thought that this was going to be my life now with puffer fish lips! Even though you are warned that this will happen it is still a shock seeing them so big.

2 Days Later

So this makeup might be a dramatic way to show off the lips, but I don’t care. I had new makeup that I wanted to play with. Anyway, I love how they turned out and I am so pleased that my doctor at Therapie was so honest about what would be best for my lips and I trust her so much that I can’t wait to go back. I would recommend Therapie to anyone and everyone who is interested.

If fillers aren’t your thing then fear not, they do so much more than just that. They are so well known for their facials and laser hair removal services and actually have an offer on at the minute that I would love to share with you.

With every area of laser hair removal purchased you get a second area for only 1 penny. A PENNY! Plus, as if that’s not enough they offer a payment plan at 0%. You honestly would be mad not to try it.

All prices are available on their website here.

I’d love to hear if you are interested in anything I have mentioned, please let me know!

You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube

Belfast Fashion Week | What I Wore

Belfast Fashion Week… a fashion week that’s right on my doorstep that I can see what all the local designers and stores have to offer this season.  I have always been an advocate of supporting local and this is why Belfast Fashion Week is one of my favourite events to attend.  Any of you that are local or at least follow me on Instagram you can’t have missed that I attended this glorious weekend of fashion.

Friday Night

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I have received an overwhelming amount of love for this outfit I wore to the first night of Fashion Week, considering I really only put an idea for it together the night before and got the shoes and shirt a matter of hours before the show.  Normally I spend days and sometimes weeks planning out what I’ll wear for events such this, but in an outfit I threw together I’ve never felt more comfortable.  Plus, it’s a suit.  I always feel BOSS in a suit.

Topshop Petite Double Breasted Check Jacket, £65

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As someone on the curvier side I am a massive fan of Topshop and their tailoring as they seem to get it right with every garment I try on, which is so important especially when you are looking at getting a suit.  Yes, their items are a little on the pricier side but it’s worth it to know that it will fit your body well.

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Topshop Petite Belted Trousers, £42

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The petite range in Topshop is spot on for me however the items are available in Regular and Tall as well, for those of you in the world that aren’t 4 foot 11.  The trousers sat perfectly around my ankles and weren’t too flappy, which is common in larger sizes (I’m a size 16).  I am obsessed with this suit right down to the colours that run through it because I know I’ll be able to wear it with different colours and accessories.

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Dunnes Stores Savida Ruffle Bow Blouse, £25

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Bought a few hours before the show this little blouse was not only a perfect addition to the suit but a perfect addition to my wardrobe.  If you do not own a classic, white blouse then trust me my friends, go out and treat yourself to one.  You will thank me.
Anyway, I spotted this shirt just as I was leaving and as I walked towards it, not only was I praying that they had my size but that the bow was detachable.  I was in luck.  This little bow comes off allowing more versatility with it.  I was sold!  I have actually bought another one since I bought mine for Fashion Week.  No, I’m not crazy but I will wear this shirt to death!

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Belfast Bow Company Harris Tweed Bow Tie, £22.50

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The reason I hoped that the navy bow was removable was so that I could slot this little guy in.  Belfast Bow Company is home to the most amazing selection of homemade bow ties and pocket squares that I have ever seen.  Displayed so delicately they are sure to add a pop of colour to any outfit.  I am obsessed, I think it’s the cutest thing I’ve ever worn and I have a few other designs on my wish list.  Questions about this bow tie filled my Instagram DMs so fast, so here you go!

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New Look Dark Red Suedette Ankle Strap Pointed Courts, £19.99

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I have a confession… these aren’t the shoes I wore however, they are basically the same.  I can’t find mine online, the only difference is mine were black at the back and had snakeskin pattern along the side.  For £3 less, these ones are pretty great though and are by the way, the most comfortable heels I have ever worn.

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Saturday Brunch

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On Saturday morning we witnessed a stunning collection brought to us by Max Mara Weekend all while enjoying a fabulous brunch in Café Parisien.  I was again, very last minute in my wardrobe choices having only bought my ticket the previous evening!  Lucky me, I knew I had a few Boohoo items that hadn’t seen the light of day yet and even better, they were on sale!

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Boohoo Wrap Balloon Sleeve Dogtooth Culotte Jumpsuit, £18

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I’ll be honest, I had a laugh when I first put it on when it arrived.  I thought, nahhh I can never wear this.  Once I got over the loudness of it, I actually really liked it and Dogtooth is always eye catching!  I removed the belt that it came with however and wore my fake *GASP* Gucci belt from Ros Oir Boutqiue (£36, barg!) which instantly gave the jumpsuit a new lease of life.

Boohoo Velvet Flat Heel Sock Boots, £17

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I could have worn regular black boots, but I thought I would inject a little colour to this outfit to perk it up a little.  Enter my new green boots.  I’m going to go ahead and be honest with you, these are probably the most uncomfortable boots I have ever worn and I only wore them for few hours.  That being said, they were in the sale, they were a barg and I’ll probably wear them again and suffer because I love them.  They would look great with Friday night’s suit too…

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Debenhams Red Herring Green Faux Fur Coat

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I’m not going to spend a whole lot of time mentioning this coat as it was last years, it’s out of stock and I bought it two sizes too big because I convinced myself it looked good oversized.  It didn’t.

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And there you have it, the clothes I wore for this seasons Belfast Fashion Week.  I love Fashion Week, I love how it brings everyone together and we celebrate each others outfits, bounce fashion ideas off each other and view the top designer and high street picks on the catwalk.  Already looking forward to next season!

Amy xo

My Boux Avenue Experience

A few weeks ago I was invited to go into my local Boux Avenue store to check out everything that they have to offer.  Now, I am no stranger when it comes to Boux Avenue as I have always been pretty vocal about the fact that it’s my favourite store.  There is something sensual about buying underwear, I love the feeling of leaving a store knowing that I have just bought new undies.  Maybe it’s just me, but having nice new underwear makes me feel powerful, like I can take on the world.

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My first job was actually as a bra fitter in Wonderbra, when it was at The Boulevard, well back then it was The Outlet.  Since then I have always had an interest in having the right bra and why it’s important to have the right fit.  I’ll be honest, as of late I have gotten really lazy when it came to my bras as I wasn’t getting them checked when I was buying them.  I just assumed that I would be the same size as usual but fast forward to me standing in Boux Avenue and man, was I wrong.  Did you know that approximately 80 per cent of women are wearing the wrong size bra? That’s so many of us, c’mon women let’s sort it out.

Upon entering Boux Avenue my heart always flutters a little because it’s always so well laid out and cared for that it makes for very easy shopping, I couldn’t wait to get shopping.  I met with Sophie who would be my fitter and would later help me pick out my new underwear.  Such a bubbily, easy to talk to person which immediately made me feel at ease.  I’ll admit, I was nervous before I went into the changing room because I didn’t want to feel embarrassed standing there in my beat up old tan stained ‘white’ Boux bra from 4 years ago but Sophie made me feel so relaxed and not nervous at all.

I stood there in my own bra while Sophie and I chatted away while she measured me and asked me questions to find out what kind of style I liked, then she left me in the most fabulous room (with excellent lighting might I add) with a glass of prosecco.  I sat happy as larry while Sophie ran around picking the best bras for me and she came back with the most amazing selection.  I must have tried on about 15 bras and she was so honest about what suited me and what looked good which made me feel amazing, knowing that I was getting something that looked right.  As someone who has bigger boobs I can find it quite difficult to know what suits and what doesn’t, so having a second opinion really made all the difference.

Even though I had been measured, the size that I was measured to didn’t apply to all bras which is why it’s so important to try them on when you are in store.  For example, I had been wearing a 34G, Sophie then matched me to a 34G and so for a quick second I was smug that I was wearing the right bra.  However, I tried on the 34Gs in store and it turns out they were too small, so upgraded to a 36G.  That’s pretty much just a guide size as yes the majority of bras I tried on fitted in a 36G but it a few I needed to go up in the back size.  I can’t stress how important it is to try them on, as even if you have your size you might need it tweaked slightly.

Having the right fitting bra does wonders for your shape and I swear, instantly makes you feel more confident.  Not only does does your bra provide support to your breasts and flatter you it also, let’s be honest, enhances your sex appeal.  You know that feeling of taking your bra off at the end of the day?  Yeah, you’re probably wearing the wrong size.  Your bra should never feel too tight or constrict you in any way.  I gotta admit, it’s nice not having my bra feel like a cheese wire, cutting my body to bits during the day.  My new underwear is so comfortable and even though I am happy knowing that I am around a 36G, I will definitely get my next bras fitted too.

I was kindly gifted 3 sets from Boux Avenue and grabbed two other sets while I was there, while leaving with a wish list as long as my arm.  Keep scrolling to see what I picked up!

Chloe Lace Plunge Bra, £26 | Chloe Lace Shorts, £12

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Shop Here

Harper Non Padded Full Support Bra, £32 | Harper Brazilian Briefs, £14

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Priscilla Full Support Balconette Bra, £32 | Priscilla Briefs, £15

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I also picked up these beauties in the sale!  I am thrilled with the experience I had and if you are lucky to be near a Boux Avenue store then definitely called in.  For those of you who live near me in Belfast, then I couldn’t recommend Sophie enough.

Have you been fitted for a bra recently?  How did you find your experience?  Send me a message, I would love to hear!

Amy xo

PS.  Boux Avenue have buy one bra get one half price right now – go go go!

New Look – Best of the Sale

New Look is one of those stores that I go through phases of loving and seeing everything in and then seeing absolutely nothing.  This season however, New Look has totally been on my side and the majority of clothes I have purchased for myself have come from New Look.  They currently have up to 70% off and there are some amazing things in the sale that I just have to share with you, some of them I have purchased for myself too.

Black Spot Print Button Front Jumpsuit, £27.99 £14

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I recently wore this jumpsuit for my little trip to The Junction (you can read about the trip here) but I received so many compliments on it and noone could believe I only paid £14 for it.  It comes with a matching polka dot belt however I removed it and use my faux Gucci belt from Ros Oir Boutique to cinch in my waist to make it a little more flattering.

Khaki Button Front Tapered Leg Jumpsuit, £24.99 £11

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This jumpsuit will always be what I wore to Shania Twain.  The day I saw SHANIA TWAIN I wore this jumpsuit.  Such a comfortable outfit and very easy to dress up or down and I don’t know what it is about khaki colour, but when i’m not feeling an outfit I add khaki and it’s instantly better.  Similar with the above jumpsuit it comes with a matching belt however I find that the belts that come with the outfits are never great quality so I swapped out the belt for a leopard print belt, matching bag and heels – all New Look of course.

Tall Pale Blue Paperbag Waist Trousers, £19.99 £8

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Okay, yes you may be thinking – tall? Really Amy?  I honestly didn’t realise I was buying tall when I purchased them however, they fit perfectly so it was all meant to be.  They really shouldn’t have fit considering I am not even 5 foot…

Blue Rinse Wash Double Breasted Denim Midi Dress, £25.99 £12

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I am so in love with this dress and I love it paired with these white boots!

Orange Round Buckle Cross Hatch Pinafore Dress, £19.99 £10

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Team this cute rust orange pinafore with a polo neck to transition this pinafore into an outfit perfect for Autumn!

Rust Polka Dot Scuba Crop Trousers , £19.99 £10

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Continuing on with the rust theme, these culottes are perfect for brightening up a Winter wardrobe and will be easily taken into your Spring/Summer wardrobe too as polka dots never go out of style!

Black & White Stripe Duster, £34.99 £10

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I’m in love with this duster jacket and have ordered this for myself.  Wear it like the model, styled down or dial it up for a night out this duster will become a staple in my wardrobe.  Would be gorgeous worn closed with a skinny belt!  Plus, for £10 it’s such a bargain!

White Spot Print Double Breasted Midi Dress, £29.99 £10

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I’m sorry, but I can’t stop with the polka dots.  I just picture this outfit all glammed up like Julia Roberts, would be gorgeous with a big hat!  In reality I would wear it with vans and hair shoved up in a bun – still cute though!

Mela Cream Lace Trim Tie Neck Blouse, £28 £18

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You can never have enough white blouses.  They simply go with everything, whether you’ve got trousers, skirts or culottes a white shirt or blouse should be your safety net and I love the detailing on the sleeves.  I’m tempted to buy two…

Black Faux Snakeskin Baker Boy Hat £9.99 £3

Black Prince of Wales Check Baker Boy Hat, £9.99 £3

I do love baker hats however sometimes I feel like Oliver Twist when I wear them, that being said they are too good an offer to pass up!

Have you got any bargains recently?  I’d love to hear!

The Junction, Antrim

I was recently invited down to check out The Junction, Antrim as part of their Connection Club Weekend.  The Junction is an amazing shopping destination situated about 20 miles from Belfast with not only over 30 retailers but an amazing 10 screen Omniplex cinema.  The Connection Club is a promotion that enables you to receive extra discounts, offers and exclusive events.  Think of it as a VIP card that allows you to save a little money while you shop – allowing you to shop more!  You can sign up for the Connection Club here and view what stores are available here.

Of course me being me, I quite literally ran straight to the beauty outlet as it has my name written all over it.  I went in fully confident that I would walk around and have a nosy at all the amazing offers however, as soon as my foot stepped over the threshold I completely lost all ability to think and went from the front to the back up and down the aisles telling staff that ‘this is amazing’ and obsessively congratulating a girl called Mags who keeps the lipsticks looking so neat on doing such a good job.  Mags, I am sorry.

View this quick video of me walking around the store and keep scrolling for a more in depth view of the offers available – perfect for dare I say the C word?  Christmas.

Thank you so much to The Junction and Beauty Outlet who gifted me with a voucher!  If you follow me on Instagram then you’ll see all the goodies I got!

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As soon as you walk in there’s a fantastic beauty bar area with chairs and glorious light up mirrors surrounded by amazing offers.  A great area to sit and try on makeup!

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I first had a rummage around at the foundations and while there is a huge variety o products I did however notice that there are not full shade ranges.  I was able to find my colours very easily and there is still a great range but you may have to sacrifice going a little lighter or darker if you cannot find your shade – but that’s okay, because they have bronzers.  One of my favourite foundations, Rimmel Lasting Finish foundation is available there and you can see my first impression of this foundation on my YouTube here.

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I think my favourite part about walking around this store had to have been the lipstick section.  Not only was it just so satisfying to look at but the lipsticks were around the £1.99/£2.99 mark.  I mean, my Starbucks order costs more than that.  If you watched my Instagram stories then you’ll know that I got so overwhelmed by the lipstick aisle that I actually only left with two lipsticks and two lips liners.  It is just so unlike me.  I can’t wait to go back and buy more!

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I felt like I was walking around Willy Wonka’s factory in this store, honestly.  Just look at all those brushes and beauty blenders?  I was in total heaven and all for a fraction of the price that you would pay in places like Boots and Superdrug.  I love getting things like these as little presents, if you were starting to think of mini gifts for *whispers* Christmas then these are all perfect!

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Again, on the gift train – whether it’s a gift for yourself of you are in need of a present for someone these are amazing and come in the cutest packaging.  W7 were one of the main brands I seen in the beauty outlet and I have used some things from them before and they are actually pretty good, amazing for the price!  How amazing is this brush set below?

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In addition to makeup and accessories they also have a great range of skincare, bath and body and fragrances so there really is something for everyone!  So looking forward to going back to the store and The Junction in general as all staff seem so friendly and The Junction is an amazing place to walk around.

Have you been before?  What are your thoughts? Let me know!

You can follow me on InstagramTwitterFacebook and YouTube

Primark AW18

Oh where do I start when it comes  to Primark?  It is honestly one of my favourite stores and for those of you who are reading from Northern Ireland, you’ll know of the devastation that has fallen upon our city of Belfast and our Primark store.

On Tuesday 28th August, the Bank Buildings which housed our beloved Primark went up in flames engulfing the entire building.  After the panic and we knew that everyone that was in the building was safe, the fear started to settle in – where were we going to shop?  I shop in Primark – honestly? – at least once a week.  Where was I going to get my tights?  My pajamas?  My cute homeware?  My last minute outfits for events?!  Then I realised… there are plenty of other Primark stores in Northern Ireland.  Yes, yes they may not be as good as the one in Belfast city centre however, they are still Primark!  My Instagram followers were all going through the same thing and having the same thoughts and so I decided to do something about it.

Retail is already struggling at the minute especially on our High Street, from House of Fraser to Toys r Us to the likes of JJB Sports.  Just after the fire in Belfast I was gifted with a voucher from Primark and I decided to use it to show my Instagram followers that all is not lost!  I took myself off on a bus to a nearby Primark in the Abbey Centre, Newtownabbey and here you can see all my favourite things in the store right now.  You can search for your closest store here.

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This is one of those coats, up there with the likes of the camel coat that will go with absolutely anything and everything in your wardrobe.  It will become a staple in your wardrobe and the material feels great, a steal for only £30!

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I think  this is my favourite coat I have ever seen.  An absolute beauty, I can’t wait to go back as they didn’t have my size when I was in the store.  It’s times like these when I wish Primark was available to shop online.  This pattern is all over the stores at the minute and what better way to wear the trends than with a statement coat?  I can picture this with a fantastic red bag and beret, a beautiful cream cashmere jumper and jeans.  Again, at only £30 this coat is an Autumn/Winter must have!

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This coat makes me positively giddy.  Somewhere in between a subtle coat and a statement coat this is perfect for those of you who can’t decide.  This coat is bang on trend and these styles of coats sit so well and are flattering on the body.  Another bargain coat at £30!

JACKETS

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These jackets are so cute and fluffy, a great way to add an edge to your outfit.  Corduroy has made a comeback this season and this jacket would be perfect for injecting a little into your wardrobe.  Shorted, cropped style jackets are perfect for more petite ladies too as they suit a smaller frame!

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If you prefer a pop of colour then think pink jacket will be more up your street.  Both colours are beautiful however, the brown would be easier styled if your wardrobe has more muted tones but for those who aren’t afraid to dial it up with colour this jacket will be perfect for you.  The collar and inside are so soft that it makes you feel like you’re wearing a cloud!

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I tried this jacket on and immediately wished I was standing near a motorcycle, wearing aviators and my hair in a messy bun.  Again, the inside is insanely soft which is amazing considering the price.  This is another one of those jackets that you could wear with anything, I am definitely going back for this jacket.  I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I seen it.

ACCESSORIES

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There’s nothing that a great tote can’t fix.  If I am unsure about an outfit or my outfit seems too loud then I’ll make it more neutral and dial it up with a tote bag.  These totes are perfect for this, I have my eye on the leopard print tote considering animal print is the trend of the year!  The red bag would be perfect with the coat from earlier… oh, I’ve sold it to myself.

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Another cute little bag, I am in love with the details on the bag.  Details on bags like these really make an £8 bag look far more expensive.  A great size bag perfect for day or night!

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More on the leopard print, I’m sorry I just can’t get enough of it.

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I talked about this hat on my stories, I completely forgot to go back for it!  I can’t wait to go back for it as not only am I a lover on hats, but the size of it was perfect.  Some hats are just too big but this one was just right!  There’s nothing like the regret of the things you don’t buy…

CLOTHING

Primark is not only great for creating outfits but also for taking tops and skirts and using them to update clothes you already have.  This leather skirt for example, perfect with tights, boots and a polo neck for this time of year!  Primark’s clothes are so versatile that they really would suit everyone and that makes them one of our high streets greatest stores.

With my gift card I puchased a trouser and blazer set with a top and I wore it to an event recently and I received so many messages about it – people asking was it actually Primark!  See below for my outfit!

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Belfast Fashion Week Launch AW18

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Here we are again to my favourite time of the year, Autumn is fast approaching and as are the new clothes coming in to our favourite stores – but hold on!  What to buy?  Oh no, here we go again, don’t know what to wear?  Not sure what’s ‘trendy‘ this season?  Look no further because I recently attended the Belfast Fashion Week Launch for Autumn Winter 2018 and oh my, there are some beautiful clothes coming your way this year!

Hosted by our ever fabulous Cathy Martin, PR Queen and Fashion Goddess in the Fitzwilliam Hotel, the perfect setting for an array of such beautiful clothes.

What I Wore

Before you see the amazing trends that befell us let’s look at what I wore!

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New Look Mustard Check Cropped Trousers, £19.99

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I am so in love with these trousers!  They are so comfortable and not an annoying zip in sight and match a lot more versatile than I thought.  They go with so many things and are easily dressed up or dressed down for a more casual look.

New Look Mustard Ribbed Roll Neck Top, £8.99

mustard-ribbed-roll-neck-topThese polo necks are perfect for wearing underneath large coats or chunky knits as they are nice and thin, so you don’t roast alive underneath.  They come in a variety of colours and at such a great price, you’re going to want to pick up a few.

New Look Mustard Single Breasted Formal Coat, £34.99

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I’ll be the first to admit I might have went overboard with the mustard and the New Look shopping.  It’s all just so nice, have you been in recently? Their Autumn/Winter selection is outstanding, I can’t wait to go back and get the rest that I mentally put in my favourites.

TRENDS

Animalistic

We have gone wild for animal print – see what I did there?  So many designers this season have made a bid for the fabulous animal print and it is everywhere.  If you aren’t someone who wants to fully immerse themselves in this trend you can add a small pop in your accessories with a fabulous bag or boots to transform yourself, ready for Autumn.

I’ve said it before in my Leopard Print post but it makes me so happy to see so many women and men embracing this trend and Belfast Fashion Week’s launch was no different.

Let your outfits roar with this trend this season.

Clash Is The New Match

Leading on from Animal Print sees a trend that I have always been a little scared to try and pull off myself but I have recently learned that if you wear anything with confidence it will look unbelievable.  You wear the clothes, don’t let the clothes wear you.  Something to remember for this fantastic clash of prints.  If anything, when you can’t decide what to wear – clash them!

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Here Cathy has shown us a dress that allows feminine florals to meet sassy stripes while below these stunning floral prints are a sure way to turn heads this season.  After all, floral in spring?  Groundbreaking.

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Check ✔

Alas, we have arrived at my favourite trend allowing me to live out my Cher Horowitz, Clueless fantasy in tasteful checked print.  You must be thinking, how the hell can I wear that print?  The most fashionable way, as we have said already, is to embrace the Mix and Match.

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This fabulous ensemble puts me in mind of Balenciaga and I cannot wait to get my hands on all of it.  I have my eye on this Topshop, Check Midi Skirt, it will be coming home with me.

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Ellen looks unbelievable in the outfit, definitely one of my favourite looks from the entire morning and I am pleased to say I already own the suit from the look.  Now I just have to collect the rest!  I must say at this point, the makeup by Oonagh Bomanand her team was just stunning.  There is nothing nicer than a bold, statement lip and this lip pulls the red out of the suit to perfectly compliment this outfit.

Bold & Bright

This selection of outfits actually has me salivating.  I have always been a huge fan of colour and I am not one for hiding away from brights, as you can see from my outfit for the Launch.  These power suits and coats speak to me on another level.

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I am head over heels at the clothing seen at BFW Launch and I am certainly going to be out of pocket investing in all these fantastic pieces.  What are your favourite trends this season or what are you most looking forward to wearing?  I’d love to hear!

West Coast Cooler Fashion Week Starts Friday 19th October and runs to Sunday 21st October.  If you like what you see you can find more information on the shoes and purchase tickets HERE

AW18 – Boots Wishlist

Every year I become a little obsessed with buying boots because I love nothing
more than slipping on a pair of jeans, a pair of beautiful yet comfy boots and
sliding on into Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spice Latte. It’s basic, and I LIKE IT.
There is something about buying your Autumn/Winter boots and feeling the
need for a night by the fire and a hot cup of chocolate.

Or in my case, wine.
Always wine.

I always find it quite hard to pick just the perfect boot, so if any of you have the
same problem I thought I would make it a little easier and so I have put together
my favourite boots from the shops this season making it easier for you to walk in
to Autumn looking fabulous.

Flat Boots

New Look Wide Fit Yellow Block Heel Ankle Boots, £25.99

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Inject a pop of colour into your wardrobe this Autumn/Winter with a coloured boot, I love these yellow boots and they will go with my entire wardrobe this year as I bought everything yellow.

Shop Here

Monki Wine Red Chelsea Ankle Boots, £40

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I am immediately attracted to high shine boots but unfortunately I clearly drag my feet when I walk because I ruin every boot I get.  I am obsessed with the colour of these shoes as they will go with everything and make a change from the regular black boot.  Monki is a fantastic brand and the quality of their products is outstanding.

Shop Here

Missguided White Three Buckle Pointer Boots, £35

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I normally can’t pull off the white boots trend but something about these boots has me putting them in and out and in and out of my shopping cart.  I love the buckle detail and the heel is a perfect little height.

Shop Here
Heel Boots

Topshop Wide Fit Babe Ankle Snake Print Boots, £39

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Actually obsessed with these, they were in my dreams last night.  I was wearing them and I mean, I looked good.  In fact, yep – I just bought them.  Animal print boots are a great way to inject the trend into your everyday wardrobe without feeling like you are dressed like Kat Slater.

Shop Here

Topshop Brandy Ankle Boots, £36

I can’t decide between the colours, but here I am again with the patent ankle boots.  I love the high shine effect!  Topshop are one of my favourite places for boots as I find them the comfiest to wear all day.  They look similar to the Gianvito Rossi style boots but for a fraction of the price!

Shop Here

Pretty Little Thing Beige Faux Snake Ankle Boot, £35

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More snake print, this trend is essential for you wardrobe this season.  I love these pattern boots to instantly jazz up a regular outfit and take it from a 7 to a 10.

Shop Here

River Island Silver Glitter Block Heel, £42

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I’m sorry, are you seeing these?  Picture these, Christmas party (sorry, but it is coming whether you want it or not) with the light hitting off them.  Yeah I’ll just wait here while you buy them.

Shop Here

Over The Knee Boots

Zara Flat Stretch Boots With Studs, £59.99

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I love over the knee boots, they look amazing with a chunky knit and leggings or jeans.  These Zara boots are one of the nicest pairs I have seen this year, I love a pair of simply black boots and the studded detail up the back just kicks these boots up a notch.

Shop Here

Office Krissy Over The Knee Black Leather, £87

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If you are a fan of leather then look no further than these fantastic boots from Office.  They look so comfy and have a block heel which I love.  AND, they are on sale from £125 to £87!

Shop Here

Designer Boots

Gucci Jordaan Leather Ankle Boot, £715

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I want to put these on my feet and never take them off.  These styles of boots are my favourite as they are so comfortable and easily worn.  A good classic boot that go with everything!

Shop Here

Balenciaga Knife Leopard Booties, £1175

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I had to put these boots in, they are so cute.  I love the sock boot design, they are so cute and so comfortable and again, the animal pattern is a great way to inject a little trend into your outfit.

Shop Here

Happy Shopping!  What are your favourite style of boots for Autumn/Winter?

 

Top 5 Blushers

The beauty world has become so obsessed with highlighters and bronzers that
we have forgotten about one very important part of our makeup routine – the
blush. I have always loved blush and if I am honest, probably have loved it a little
too much in the past. When I was 15 I definitely had that Aunt Sally look nailed.
Fast-forward a few years and a practice in application I finally see what the fuss
was all about.

Before I begin listing my favourite blushers let’s talk about what it does for your
face. Blusher has the power to actually brighten and lift your face and is the
perfect finish to create a beautiful makeup look. Blusher is classy and enhances a
real, natural face shape as opposed to ‘look at my natural sunken in cheekbones’
a la Kim K. As nice as that look can be, when done right, there’s something about
a blush that makes all the difference.

When I look for blushers I tend to buy fairly versatile shades that suit a variety of
skin tones so that I can keep them in my kit to suit everyone. Whatever your
preference be it matte or shimmery, there is always something out there to suit
you.

MAC ‘Melba’ Powder Blush, £19.50

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I have always loved MAC’s blushers as their formula is perfectly creamy and they have an amazing variety of shades.  My most used shade is by far Melba and as it is a beautiful soft coral peach shade this blusher beautifully compliments a huge variety of skin tones.  It is super pigmented so just use a little each time you are using it.  With no shimmer it’s great for all skin types and ages and is a staple in my Make Up Kit giving a the skin a perfect glow.

Shop Here

NARS Blush ‘Orgasm’, £24

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This blusher shouldn’t need any introduction as if you are familiar with blushes at all, you should have tried this one.  If you haven’t, what are you doing?  You owe it to yourself to try the blush that permanently tops the list as one of the best blushers on the market.  An iconic blusher that gives natural, healthy looking colour without looking too heavy and again, you only need a light application to give a beautiful colour.

Shop Here

Milani Baked Blush ‘Luminoso’, £10

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These blushers are unreal and for £10 they are such a good quality!  It’s very hard to pick just one shade that I like from this range as I use them all and love them all.  As I tend to go for more coral colours with blush I tend to use ‘Luminoso’ the most.  Baked on Italian terracotta the powder is so finely milled that it delivers a smooth and silky application.

Shop Here

Charlotte Tilbury Cheek to Chic ‘Ecstasy’, £30

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Charlotte’s range of blushers are my absolute favourite.  They scream luxury and everyone needs a little luxury in their make up bag!  Currently there are 6 powder shades to choose from and again, sorry I like the coral shades so my favourite is the shade ‘Ecstasy’ but there are colours to suit everyone.  I love having a glow from my blusher and with Light Flex Technology these blushers capture and reflect light again leaving your skin with a beautiful soft sheen.

Shop Here

Bare Minerals Gen Nude Powder Blush ‘Pretty In Pink’, £22

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Seriously blendable and buildable blushers this range from Bare Minerals is a staple in my own routine and in my makeup kit.  I’ve collected a few shades since they have launched however, I use ‘Pretty In Pink’ most often, a beautiful subtle pink shade and ‘Bellini Brunch’ which is a beautiful peach shade.  The formula is so creamy and glides on to the skin effortlessly without catching and giving the skin texture giving the skin a soft focus effect.

Shop Here

What blushers do you like, or do you even use blusher at all?  I would love to hear your favourites.

You can follow me on InstagramFacebookTwitter and YouTube

And if you like this Top 5 series then you can check out my other Top 5 posts HERE

Autumn/Winter Trend – Leopard Print

I am so living for this trend.  Anyone who I have spotted wearing leopard print this season has a confidence like nothing I have ever seen.  I am so happy to see so many sassy ladies walking round, it’s like walking around the set of Sex and the City.

I have put together a selection of my favourite leopard print items so you can amp up your wardrobe at the click of a button!  I apologise in advance for your purses…

IM Trending Beige Leopard Print Wide Leg Trousers, £26

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Not only is Ivona one of the nicest people, but she has a pretty amazing selection of clothes on her new website.

Shop Here

Motel Rocks High Waist Pencil Skirt, £18

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Shop Here

Missguided Gold Print Wrap Maxi Dress, £40

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Obsessed.  Obsessed.  Obsessed.  Picture this with a fierce tan and amazing accessories and you are good to go.

Shop Here

Nasty Gal So Fierce Shirt, £25

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Combining two trends in one this pajama style shirt and leopard print are a match made in heaven.

Shop Here

Topshop Kenya Leopard Print Tote Bag, £32

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Leopard print can be an intimidating print to pull off so this bag is perfect to add to any outfit to spice it up a little and be bang on trend for the upcoming season.

Shop Here

New Look

New Look are killing it in every aspect.  Normally New Look is one of those places I see nothing or I see everything and it’s a great place for shoes.  New Look are one of my favourite places for anything from pumps to loafers to an emergency pair of heels.  So I have left a few pairs of my faves below.

Leopard Print Stiletto Heel, £22.99

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Shop Here

Stone Leopard Print Canvas, £17.99

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Shop Here

Tan Leopard Print Chunky Sole Lace Up, £27.99

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I absolutely love these, great for jazzing up a jeans and t-shirt kind of day!

Shop Here

New Look Print Suedette Ring Handle Bag, £19.99

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I had to buy this little bag the moment I set eyes on it!  I also then bought the matching belt…

Shop Here

Happy shopping!

Top 5 Mascaras

A mascara is one of those products that nobody is ever done looking for the next best thing.  When you find a good powder or a good foundation, you stick with it for awhile but a mascara?  Be honest, how many different mascaras have you tried?  How many have you re bought because they were actually good?

Let me help you stop wasting your money with some of my tried and tested favourite mascaras.

Charlotte Tilbury Full Fat Lashes, £23

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This mascara is one of those ones that is perfect for those of you who don’t like crazy, dramatic lashes.  Sounds stupid, you want a  mascara that does the most for you but this mascara does it, without giving you thick and unnatural looking lashes.  With a brush that has 5 grooves it deposits enough mascara to the base of your lashes, so that it pushes the lashes up and out.  The bristles themselves are so fine that they catch every lash ensuring fluttering, fluffy lashes.  My favourite thing about this mascara is that it doesn’t smudge.  I don’t know what is wrong with my eyes but the majority of mascaras that touch my eyes, fall down and smudge, this one doesn’t allowing it to last all day.

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Lancome Hypnôse Volume-à-Porter, £25

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I keep this as my ‘night out’ mascara.  It is perfect for amping up those lashes to give a sexy and seductive flutter.  I had used the Lancome Hypnôse Drama for years but I far prefer this mascara as it gives extra volume and glides on like a dream without feeling clumpy and doesn’t leave you with spidery lashes.

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Max Factor False Lash Effect, £10.99

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Again, another superb mascara for every day use.  No flaking and no clumping provides amazing longwear which is perfect for during the day as no one likes to look in the mirror on their lunch break and look like they just watched The Notebook.

I love the brush on this mascara as it applies just the perfect amount of product and never goes overboard.  It’s easy to remove as well, which is perfect for me as I have such sensitive eyes and vigorous removing of eye makeup is not good.

13.1ml – SO much product!

Estee Lauder Doublewear Zero Smudge Lengthening, £23

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Boasting 15 hour wear this mascara is sure to survive all day with you.  Delivering voluptuous lashes, this mascara always gives me the most amazing length with my lashes.  I always use this mascara when I am going for a strong liner look, as the lashes lift above the liner line creating amazing Brigitte Bardot style eyes.

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Clinique High Impact, £19

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Last but certainly not least, Clinique’s High Impact mascara was one of the first premium mascaras I ever bought, I remember buying it in Boots and feeling like such a big girl not buying something like Miss Sporty.  This mascara adds maximum volume while defining and lengthening.  The brush and formula have been specifically designed to work together to create dramatic, thicker lashes.

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Have you tried any of these mascaras or have you found your ultimate mascara?  I would love to hear about it!  Send me a message and let me know.

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Read more from my Top 5 Series HERE

Charlotte Tilbury Favourites

Charlotte Tilbury – a brand whose products make you utter an ‘ooh’ when you lift every product.  It is very easy  to get stuck in Charlotte’s Web when you stop by the counter and her products always leave you wanting more.  Not only is it a brand with beautiful, glimmering and not to mention addictive products but it is run by an absolutely amazing lady, Charlotte Tilbury (MBE!).

Charlotte Tilbury for those of you who don’t know is a living, breathing make up artist.  Her love of make up began when she was just 13 when she tried mascara for the first time.  I think we can all remember the very first time we played with makeup and the difference mascara made to our lives.  Throughout the years Charlotte has worked with the industry’s best and most creative from Mary Greenwell to Tom Ford and has gathered up an amazing amount of experience allowing her to become the World’s Number One Make Up Artist.  All her credits aside, at the end of the day she is an absolute BOSS and has created an absolutely amazing brand.

Warning! I have lots of favourite products…

Magic Cream, £70

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Of course this one is going to appear on my list.  I have always been a skincare geek and as soon as Charlotte marched on to the market I had to get my hands on this little pot of goodness that promised amazing benefits for the skin.  I had heard lots about the cream before it was even out for sale as she used it on all of her amazing model and celebrity clients.  The reason I liked the sound of it so much is because it’s designed to suit everyone.  Do you ever go to discuss skincare at your favourite counter and there are SO many creams you don’t know what to pick?  Good news, Charlotte Tilbury has done the leg work for you and created a jar of magic that suits everyone and appeals to all skin types.

100% of users agreed that their tired and dull skin was transformed so you just know that this cream will be amazing.  Personally I have dehydrated skin that has a tendency to get very red when not cared for properly.  When I used this cream my redness just washes away to create a perfect base for makeup to be applied to.  I wouldn’t dare touch my skin with makeup unless this is applied.  The Hyaluronic Acid seals in moisture so your skin stays hydrated and supple throughout the day while the Rosehip, Camellia Oils and Vitamin E is what transforms your dull complexion leaving your skin bright and youthful.

Overnight Bronze & Glow Mask, £38

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I have talked about Charlotte Tilbury’s sheet masks before however, this time I am going to talk about the Bronze & Glow Mask.  I never put fake tan on my face for fear of my skin drying out and considering I always have it on my body as I am so pale, my face in turn always looks ghostly white.  This mask is perfect for anyone similar to me with their tanning habits as it gives you the perfect sunkissed glow and you can use it as many times a week as you like depending on how dark you like your facial tan.  I tend to use it once every other night as I always like a faint colour on my skin.  You could use it once a week or every night, personal preference!

Not only does it do exactly what it says on the tin in giving you a perfect bronzed glow but Oat Kernel Extract actually reduces redness and soothes skin while protecting and hydrating the skin and Blackcurrant Seed Oil gives bio-mimetic conditioning to your skin ensuring a flawless finish each time.

Watch Charlotte’s Bronzed and Glowing Makeup Tutorial using Bronze & Glow Mask here

Supermodel Body Highlighter, £45

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Never before have I covered myself in a product that has made me stare at my own limbs so much.  Why should highlight stop at your cheekbones, you can highlight your whole body with this body shimmer?  Allow this cooling roller ball tip to glide effortlessly all over your body to coat yourself in liquid gold. Aside from making you look unbelievable there is so much going on under the surface of this product.  Containing FermiBlend Supermodel Body protects the collagen fibers in the skin making your skin look firmer and more toned.  It streamlines limbs and makes your skin look seriously smooth while caffeine detoxes the skin and diminishes any puffiness.

As if that’s not enough, it contains Aloe Vera to soothe and comfort while Menthol has a cooling sensation to help stimulate blood circulation.  Yeah, I know right?  Makes you want to buy 12 of them.

Watch Charlotte apply Supermodel Body here

Eyes To Mesmerise ‘Bette’, £22

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Meet my ‘oh crap, I’m running late’ product which is pretty much what I use on the daily.  I absolutely love this eyeshadow whether it’s on its own or as a base for one of Charlotte’s eyeshadow palettes on top it always looks effortlessly perfect.  Apply with your finger or a brush whatever you prefer for a gloriously bronzed lid.  This is my favourite shade from the range but there are plenty to choose from if bronzes and browns aren’t your thing.

The water infused formula has a cooling effect on the eyes so will never feel too thick or like you are wearing too much.  It doesn’t crease and doesn’t wear off, which is a triumph in itself for a cream eyeshadow pot.  Vitamin E hydrates making it absolute perfection for anyone with dryer lids also.  Stop, I know what you’re thinking – ‘but my eyes are too wrinkly for shimmers or creams.’  Number one, stop talking nonsense your eyes are beautiful and two, soft-focus illuminating pigments smooth over lines and imperfections for a more youthful finish.  You’re welcome.

Watch Charlotte’s Eyes To Mesmerise Bette Tutorial here

Legendary Brows, £18.50

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There was a time when brows were just brows, hairy things above our eyes.  Then all of a sudden brows were massive, quite literally.  I am a fan of a more fluffier brow and considering I have barely any hair on my eyebrows this product was sent from heaven down to me to save my brows.  The brush is so fine that it picks up hairs you don’t even realise you have!  My makeup never feels complete without a few lashings of this on my brows.  It can be worn alone or alongside your other brow products but you know when you use something like a brown pencil, it almost flattens your hairs?  Using a brow gel will make them look nice and 3D and fuller and my brows never feel crunchy from too much product as you really need so little.

The gel contains volumising Magic Elasticizing Wax, nourishing Vitamin E, strengthening Castor Oil and natural pigments that lift and tint.

Watch Charlotte create amazing fluffy brows in seconds here

K.I.S.S.I.N.G Lipstick, £24

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I always seem to end up in the shades ‘Penelope Pink’ (pictured) or ‘Hepburn Honey’ but the entire range is stunning.  Really though, what sets Charlotte Tilbury lipsticks apart from the rest?  Aside from a beautiful array of shades the lipsticks contain a stunning blend of waxes that allow the lipstick to glide on without dragging across the lip and drying the lip out.  The light diffusing pigments gives your lips a multi dimensional finish leaving them looking full and luminous.

Charlotte has a wide range of lipstick formulas including Matte Revolution containing the ever so coveted Pillowtalk and the Hot Lips range so there really is something for everyone’s taste depending on the finish and colour you like.

Filmstar Bronze & Glow, £49

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Okay, so if any of you follow me on Instagram you will know by  now that I use this all day every day and it is my favourite product in my makeup bag let alone from Charlotte Tilbury.  It is hard to find a bronzer that doesn’t leave you resembling a wotsit so that’s why the Filmstar palette always features in my daily makeup routine.

The bronzer is a blend of pearl and pigment to help contour your face and give you that gorgeous sunkissed glow and the highlighter has a golden base which will flatter everyone .  If it’s a glow you’re after you can look no further than this palette as you are guaranteed healthy, radiant skin.

See for yourselves, watch Wayne Goss this time show you how to use it here

I have really had to reign it in talking about my favourites from Charlotte Tilbury as there are simply so many but there are my ride or die products from the brand.  Charlotte is no stranger to featuring in my previous blogs, you can read about the famous Airbrush Flawless Finish powder in my top 5 powders. and the Wonderglow in my top 5 primers for dry skin.

You can follow me on InstagramTwitter and Facebook xo

AND for those of you who are local to me (Northern Ireland) you can visit me in House of Fraser, Belfast at the Charlotte Tilbury counter!

 

 

 

 

LQ Liquid Health Supplements – Skin, Hair & Nails

I was recently gifted a box of the LQ Liquid Health Skin, Hair & Nails and I don’t think I have even been so excited to try something out.  Liquid supplements and pill supplements are something I have never really dived into so I couldn’t wait to try these out.

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The main question I had going into using these was Do Liquid Supplements Actually Work?  Well, let’s find out…

I received a box of the 10 Day Supply which you can purchase for £29.99, you can also purchase a 30 Day, £59.98 (save 30%) and 90 Day Supply, £175.44 (save 35%) in case you want to save a little money when you bulk buy.  They come in little 50ml test tube style bottles that make for easy drinking, they remind me of test tube shots!  They go down a lot easier than shots mind you, just maybe follow up with some water after.  With a fabulous scent of strawberries, real strawberries not like strawberry laces these are sure to give you a little boost whenever you take them.  I decided to use them every morning alongside my breakfast – they are not meal replacement so enjoy them alongside a healthy balanced diet to ensure you see the best results!

Containing Marine Collagen, Hyaluronic Acid, Biotec, Resveratol and many more amazing ingredients these Liquid Supplements I knew I was going to see a difference in my skin and honestly I really did.  I didn’t notice anything for the first few days, but I am so impatient and a bit of a ‘I need to see results now’ kind of person.  After day 3, I woke up and honestly my first thought was ‘ooh, my hair looks shiny.’  With blonde hair it can be hard for your hair to look shiny as it’s already fairly light but I definitely noticed a difference.  When I got to work I was asked repeatedly if I had had my hair done and while the normal response was ‘I washed it ha ha‘ the response this time was ‘oh my god I tried these supplements.’  I noticed a difference in my hair first of all, but I would say it is different for everyone what you notice first.

So there’s me being all bizz with my shiny ass hair and on day 6 or so I happened to notice my nails.  Now, I have been getting acrylic nails done for  the last few years on and off so my nails are in a bit of state and honestly have a similar texture to paper.  It makes typing a blog post basically impossible without pain.  Fast forward a few days and I can definitely feel them stronger, not necessarily growing because it’s only been a few days but they 100% feel stronger.  I’d say if I used them for more than 10 days my nails would definitely strengthen up more and would maybe be able to stop with the acrylics!

I’ve never really had problems with my skin, thank you Lord but I have by no means  perfect skin.  From using these liquid supplements I geniunely have seen a difference in my skin especially with hydration.  I tend to notice how my skin reacts to new products by how my makeup sits on top.  My makeup has been sitting clearer and not coming off during the day, decreasing the need for a powder touch up.  I hate the thought of my makeup coming off (who doesn’t?) and that fact that I can drink something that stops that from happening? Sign me up.

I loved using these liquid supplements and actually think I will use them again.  I would recommend the 30 Day Supply as I do think a month of using these would see amazing results especially after the results I seen in just 10 days.  Perfect for before a special occasion, holiday or you simply want healthier skin, hair and nails!

You can view all the LQ Liquid Health Supplements here and the do a fantastic range of products!  Be sure to check them out.

You can follow me on InstagramTwitterFacebook and YouTube

For more information on collagen, LQ has produced an Ultimate Guide to Collagen, that provides everything that you could possibly want to know about the importance of this key protein.
 
Why not try LQ Skin, Hair & Nails, it contains 7,000mg of high-grade collagen, as well as 8 more key active ingredients that have been scientifically formulated to help maintain healthy skin, hair and nails.

BPerfect Cosmetics Stacey Marie MUA Palette

In an age where there are hundreds of thousands of palettes out there it is rare to come across something new and different.  Not often does a make up palette come along these days containing something that actually makes me squeal.  Enter Stacey Marie MUA’s collab with BPerfect Cosmetics.  The Carnival Palette retails for £39.99 and contains a wealth of shades from bright blues and pinks to deep purples and yellows.  Boasting 24 shades and 2 highlighters this palette is nothing short of amazing.

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Stacey created this look for her demo at The Make Up Festival

Firstly a little background on BPerfect Cosmetics, a beauty brand that stormed on to the scene in 2013 that was created by Brendan McDowell.  Based in Belfast, Brendan aspired to become a creative, stand out brand oh my, did he succeed.  The brand is now available in over 1200 stockists in UK and Ireland, and has recently been made available on Beauty Bay – YAY – and for you local babes Paddy McGurgan’s Make Up Pro Store is now stocking the Carnival Palette.  If you don’t know who Stacey Marie is then you need to get yourself onto her Instagram and just look at some of her amazing work.  She can do things to an eyelid space that I never thought possible.  I am so happy that this amazing brand and amazing Make Up Artist have teamed up together and the palette is such a success.

I was invited to attend Stacey Marie’s Launch in Medicare, Forestside Belfast and had an absolute ball watching Stacey do her thing, created some masterpiece eye looks.  I was also kindly gifted the palette and haven’t been able to put it down since I got it.  I was so shocked at the payoff of all the colours as normally I find with bright colours they fade away to nothing when blended but I was pleasantly surprised at this palette.

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I used the shades Guilty, Lit, Wasted, Keen, Pink Me and Liqour to create this look inspired by another amazing Make Up Artist Keilidh Cashell, AKA Keilidh MUA.  You can find her look in her Instagram here.

Even though I have spoken mostly about the amazing bright colours it definitely appeals to someone who would want a natural look out of it too.  It’s also a fantastic palette for someone who would want to start going freelance or starting out as a make up artist as I can’t say it enough – it is just is an amazing palette.

Have you tried it yet? I would love to hear your thoughts!

You can follow me on my social media here

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What Turning 27 Does To My Brain

So today is my birthday.  I always loved my birthday and couldn’t wait for it for all the wrong reasons – couldn’t wait to see if anything fell out of my birthday cards to spend it on shite clothes I don’t need.  Couldn’t wait to rip through presents to see what was inside.  All of a sudden, this year I don’t care.  I’m sorry but what the fuck?  Why am I not an immature, selfish girl anymore?  Is this adulting?

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Before I write anymore there is a 83% chance I am about to have a mini breakdown writing this, so just bare with me. The very fact I have to now say mid to late twenties instead of early twenties knocks me over completely.  I definitely have to tick a new age box when filling out forms now…

What happens when you turn 27?  When I was younger the age 27 was the age I associated with girls who had purses full of credit cards, engagement rings, perfect jobs and big beautiful houses.  Now that I am at that ‘scary’ age, what the hell was I thinking?  There is something about the age 27 that makes me feel like I am being forced into being a grown up.  Like, don’t get me wrong, I have my shit together enough – I live with my wonderful boyfriend (puke, sorry), I love my job and I love all my little hobbies and I am by all means happy, but what is it about being 27 that makes me feel inferior?  Like, I still don’t feel like an adult but I guess I technically am.

Being 18 was amazing what with the whole I can drink legally thing.  Being 21 was amazing as I was living away from home in Scotland, living my best life and again, can drink legally everywhere.  If anything I felt more like an adult at 21 than I do now at 27.  Maybe because I was single at 21 I felt a little more independent as opposed to now where I need to split that rent or else I would be eating ramen noodles all month.

There are certain things that I feel I just can’t get away with now that I am 27.  I really can’t forget to make a payment on a card, I can’t go into my overdraft because that’s completely ‘irresponsible.’  Also, it’s not okay for me to not watch the news anymore.  I don’t like watching it because it is just full of terrible news, but at a certain point it just isn’t funny that I don’t know what’s going on in the world.

I was in Tesco buying drink for my birthday, you know… my 27th.  I wasn’t ID’d.  I don’t look old, I don’t look young but I was still very offended when I didn’t get carded.  Then I thought, I would have been over the moon when I wasn’t carded when I was younger, how can it irritate me now?

I think I am just pissed off that I can’t blame being young if something goes wrong.  At a certain point, I need to take responsibility and unfortunately I think that’s now.  I have been known to have a slightly self destructive pattern in the past however, instead of ruining lives I am now adulting hard and the only thing I really ruin are my plants.  Seriously, I can’t keep those things alive and if anyone has any tips – other than simply watering them – please let me know.

I mean, I have learned a lot in the last 27 years most of which I documented in another post 26 things. 26 years.  and I am so thankful for that as it has made me who I am today bla bla bla but unfortunately, I think that that has made me an adult.

Also, what’s with having more money when you’re still in school than now?

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A Blog For Bloggers

This one is written as a blog for bloggers, whether you are starting out or are fully fledged within your field hopefully there is something you can take away from this post today.

As a fairly new blogger – I have tried and failed to keep my blog going for the last 10 years but anxiety used to overcome me and I would delete the posts I wrote in case someone I knew seen them and made fun of me.  I recently developed an ‘I don’t give a shit’ attitude which has led me to keep writing posts for this long.  Anyway, as a newish blogger with an amazing local blogging community around me I have learned a few things along the way and yes, you guessed it I am going to share them.

Opportunities

When you start out as a blogger the fear can get to you as it got to me, that no one would care about what you are writing about.  The odd time a brand will approach you because they love your work and it is still so flattering when this happens.

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I said yes to every opportunity that came along but looking back I now realise that that may not have been a good thing.  While you should be open to writing and talking about everything, have an end goal in mind and remember that you are your brand.

What I mean is if you are a beauty lover and you predominantly talk about makeup or skincare, don’t out of  the blue start pushing a toaster because a brand approached you about it.  It took me awhile to get on my feet and get a theme but now that I have a theme, I find myself politely declining certain opportunities because I have no interest in them.  I value my blog and brand far too much to start polluting the page with items that I am not passionate about.  You won’t care about what you are writing and your readers won’t care either.

There are pros and cons to this point and I completely believe that if I hadn’t have said yes to everything that my blog and social channels may not be where they are today.  That being said, I definitely would recommend to just research your opportunities thoroughly before agreeing as they can knock off your brand and blog image.

Know Your Worth

Now that you have your blog up and running, or maybe it has been up and running for awhile and you are still unsure but it is important to know your worth.  Blogging and writing posts, especially when in collaboration with brands can feel a little like a hustle.  I have been very lucky with brands I have worked with and everyone seems normal but I have heard horror stories where brands have taken fellow bloggers for a complete ride.

What I am saying is, know how much to charge brands that are contacting you and don’t be afraid to charge for your work.  The social media game has changed so much in the last few years and it is a great way of making money, especially when you are putting so much effort in.  I’m trying not to make this point sound money hungry, I for one very rarely charge for posts to my blog or to Instagram.  I am however trying to explain that you should not get shortchanged for work that you do with brands.

I for one am over the moon when I am sent PR Mail, and I more often that not will use what I have been gifted to talk about across my channels and blog for free.  It’s when brands expect a little more than that or they explicitly ask you for more that you should know your worth and don’t settle for anything less.  As my future best friend Kanye West says “Know your worth. People always act like they’re doing more for you than you’re doing for them.”

Individuality

Individuality is so important.  You need to be a little different in order to stand out in crowd, not only in your blogging community but across your social channels too.  There are so many beauty blogs, lifestyle channels and fashion advice accounts that yours needs an edge, something to set you apart from the rest of the crowd.  Write about what you love and what inspires you and I promise you, your engagement will boom.

Not only is your uniqueness important, but so is what you are actually writing about.  Don’t write about something or post something just because someone else is doing it.  Just because someone wrote a great post and it received great feedback, doesn’t mean yours will.  It can be hard in a world where there are so many people with similar interests but if you are putting your own spin on your work then it’s guaranteed to stand out.

It’s Only A Number

When I started my Instagram I’ll admit I used to be so focused on how many followers I had.  I would be looking at people with 10 more to 10 million more than me and was always looking for more followers.  I am ashamed to admit it took me awhile to realise that the number doesn’t matter at ALL.  When you start a channel or blog your numbers are always going to be a little lower and they will grow with the more posts and content you create.

Do not be disheartened when you see someone with 20k on Instagram who is posting similar content to you.  Do not be disheartened because someone else got thousands of likes and you only got 100.  Instead, change your attitude and focus your attention on the people that are on your account, instead of looking for ones that aren’t.  Engage with them, comment and follow them back and get to know your followers.  The best advice I can give to anyone interested in blogging is that you shouldn’t give a crap about the figure at the top of your Instagram page as honestly, the way the algorithm works now it is all about your engagement.

Don’t get me wrong, I will be buzzing to reach the 10k threshold on Instagram so I can take advantage of the swipe up feature…

You may be reading this blog as someone who isn’t a blogger or as someone who isn’t remotely interested in becoming one but, these points translate equally into everyday life.  Life your life like the perfect individual you are and you will receive more appreciation for it.  Know your worth in your work life, no matter what you do these points still apply.

I hope you take something away from this post whether you a fellow blogger or not and please comment or let me know some of the things you have learned along the way.

Best Cheap Clothing Websites

There you go scrolling through your Instagram or your 21 Buttons and see something that you absolutely love, only to realise that it cost half your monthly wage and that the item is actually pretty shitty for the price of it.  Wouldn’t it be great to have a website where the prices were cheap and the products great?  Sounds to good to be true doesn’t it?  Well, over the past while as my online shopping addiction has grown I have come across a few amazing websites/apps that have exactly that – cheap and cheerful clothing that don’t leave you weeping over your bank balance once you place an order.

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You have probably heard of this before, it’s not new but it is relatively new to me as I finally took the plunge a few months ago and ordered some clothes and to my extreme surprise, they were pretty great.  I use this app constantly as it updates SO often and every time I am online there is something different to look at, not to mention they always have offers on!

You can shop via a What’s New section, Exclusives and Trends while also being able to define your search to dresses, etc like a normal website.  The sizing can be a bit of a nightmare as they don’t go in regular sizes so have your measurements ready before you start shopping.  They have a plus size section too which is amazing!

I am dressed fully in Shein clothing on my latest Instagram post and I received so many compliments on the outfit and what’s best is that it only cost me £19.97.  I lose hours a night on this website, it is so addictive!

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Shop Trousers HERE

Shop Top HERE

Shop Bag HERE

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Similar to Shein this website has crazy low prices that leave you blinking at the screen to see if it’s real.  There are far too many amazing things on the website to start listing them here but I have left a few of my favourites here for you to see.  For example this cute jumpsuit below is £12 and it’s definitely going in my basket.  Again, similar to Shein have your measurements ready as the sizes come in S, M, L, etc rather than regular sizing.1530513611748864146

Shop Jumpsuit HERE

And this cute little Cold Shoulder Tee for only £7!

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Shop Top HERE

AND it’s not all about the clothing, they have a fantastic homeware section too.  I have my eye on this cute little drawer organiser for £14 in an attempt to look like every beauty YouTuber out there.

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Shop Organiser HERE

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Okay, so this one is pretty random and warning – you will buy stuff you don’t even remotely need.  I have bought about 6 garlic crushers in the last few weeks just because they are around 50p.  I have also bought loads of random things that fill up my house like these fairy lights for £1!

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Shop Lights HERE

Everything you purchase here comes from China, so it may take awhile to come.  So don’t order a dress to wear for the weekend… I am telling you this website has everything you could think of on it from random clothing, to home ware, to jewelry to baby stuff!

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With all this money you’ll be saving you’ll probably buy more so I apologise for that… in the middle of writing this blog post I have already done another Shein order and bought the anklet above…  I need help!

 

Happy Shopping!

How To Get Designer Bags For A High Street Price – iBagzy

Yes, you read that right.  I am here to tell you how to get your designer bags for a mere fraction of the price.  Consider yourself Jennifer Hudson in Sex and the City – why buy when you can rent?  Jennifer did say after all that it’s like Netflix for purses, instead of movies it’s handbags!

In a world where McDonalds can be delivered, you best believe anything is possible and I am telling you that you can get a fabulous designer bag for a high street price.  I mean, if you have thousands of pounds to spend and own the bags, by all means you go for it.  For those of you like me, who only dream of owning such things you too can rent yours.  Whether you drool over Louis Vuitton, Dolce & Gabbana or my personal favourite, Gucci there is something for everyone and all you have to do is click a button.  Interested?  I thought so…

How Do I Rent A Bag?

One word – iBagzy.  As I said it is a rental service, but for those of you local to me (Belfast, Northern Ireland) you will be pleased to hear that this is based in Belfast but does however ship to your location for a further cost.  Before you can rent anything off the website you must fill out a registration form, only requiring a few pieces of information.  Have a driving license or passport ready and a bank statement or utility bill.  Once you have registered and are verified then you are free to shop and rent!

What Can I Rent?

The main products on the website are bags, from clutch bags to totes but you can also rent belts and the most stunning head pieces designed and created by fellow blogger Sian Cousins, all available on the website.  Prices vary depending on what you are interested in renting and for how long, I have left some examples below.

Alexander McQueen De Manta Python Effect Clutch, £30 per week

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Gucci Supreme Bees Tote & Wallet, £75 per week

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Yves Saint Laurent Monogram Glitter Kate Clutch, £45 per week

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Gucci Black Belt, £25 per week

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So as you can see, there is plenty to keep you entertained on the website!  I had my bag for a week and I have to admit, it was pretty hard to hand it back but I can’t wait to get another!

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Waiting List

As you can imagine, this is a popular service so if you are interested in renting something I would suggest getting added to the waiting list as soon as you know you want it so that you definitely have it for the date.

Happy Renting!

 

 

Summer Ready Glowy Foundations

Does anyone else scroll through their Instagram and look at all these gorgeous, glowing supermodel types and immediately want what they are wearing on their skin?  Well the good news is, thanks to the rise in popularity these foundations are readily available on pretty much every counter and from every brand out there.  The problem is, which ones are best?  As a self confessed make up obsessive, you just know I have them tried and tested so read on for my top picks for Summer 2018.

Chanel Vitalumiere, £40

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A beautifully hydrating makeup that boasts 8 hours wear to keep you looking fresh all day.  This foundation is a staple for that gorgeous Summery make up and even though it’s classed as a medium coverage it is so easily manipulated to sit lighter or even fuller if needs be.  With my redness in my skin it’s always an issue that that won’t be covered but with the colour correcting pigments infused inside that’s never an issue.  With hyaluronic acid and an SPF15 this is sure to become a favourite in your Summer makeup bag.  On the pricier side, I save this for thee most special events!

Nars Sheer Glow, £33

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One of the first brands I saved up all my money for from my part time job and spent a clean fortune in Space NK was NARS.  Among that make up splurge I found myself purchasing this foundation as I was drawn in by the allure of perfect light coverage.  It’s amazingly natural and gives a sheer but buildable finish.  Packed full of anti-oxidents it will protect your skin while making you look and feel amazing.  Something to note however, there is no SPF in it so if you are someone who likes added protection make sure you have sun protection in your moisturiser.

Charlotte Tilbury Light Wonder, £32

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My all time favourite foundation for beautiful, dewy skin.  I keep this as my kind of ‘day off’ style foundation for days where I am not doing an overly adventurous make up as it gives the effect of flawless skin without feeling like you are wearing anything.  This foundation is so versatile and still surprises me how much coverage I can get out of it as it is extremely buildable.  With a light, blendable and creamy texture it goes on like a dream no matter what your application technique and remains effortlessly glowy throughout the day.  Not only all of that but with an SPF15 you skin is sure to be protected all day.

*This is what I am wearing in the blog image*

Armani Luminous Silk, £42

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A silky, lightweight formula that glides on to the skin with seamless coverage that blends beautifully to give healthy, natural and glowing skin.  It sits comfortably on the skin but I do find however that I always need to use a powder to stop it moving around but that doesn’t bother me as I tend to use powder anyway.  When my skin is feeling a little dull this is what I tend to use as it instantly brightens and lifts the complexion, perfect if you haven’t caught as many zzz’s as you would like.

L’Oreal Paris True Match, £9.99

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I have spoken about this foundation before on my blog and on social media but it’s appearing again because I use it so so often.  It gives just enough luminosity without looking too shiny as the day goes on.  It’s a seriously blendable foundation that leaves no streaks or patchiness and is so comfortable to wear that it doesn’t feel like you are wearing much at all.

What foundations are your go to for Summer?  Send me a message, I would love to hear!

 

 

Rosefield Watches

A watch to me is just the perfect accessory.  With the right watch it will go with every outfit you have, you’ll never have the fear of it being ‘too much’ and what’s more, you’ll always have the time.  In an age where we use our phones as our watch sometimes we forget how nice it is to have one on our wrist.

One brand I have been obsessing over recently is Rosefield.  ROSEFIELD makes fashion-forward watches where classic meets modern. Where Amsterdam meets NYC. Where function meets fashion.  That, and they are stunning!  Below I have selected my favourites that you can purchase from the website.

The Mercer, £89 38mm 

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Named after Mercer Street in New York this watch jumped straight to the top of my wishlist especially with the beautiful rose gold strap and stunning eggshell white dial.

The Summer Trend Watch, £79

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Inspired by colour blocking from SS18 trends comes this beautiful array of watches with Clemence leather straps with pink stitching. Available in rose gold, gold and silver and 28mm, 33mm and 38mm faces there is something that will suit everyone no matter what you like.  Personally I love the gold as pictured here as it really compliments the pink however, you can also purchase an interchangeable strap for an extra £35.

The West Village, Velvet Blue, £89

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Not only is the West Village one of my favourite areas for prime shopping and eating in New York but it also happens to be my favourite range from Rosefield.  The watch itself has a slender case and velvety nubuck leather strap. Special details stand out, like the delicate metal rings decorating the strap. Unique to each strap color, the rings amplify the vintage-chic character of the West Village.  The navy is my favourite in this range as it looks so classic and will amp up any outfit.

The Upper East Side, £99

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No, I’m sorry but are you seeing this watch?  The Upper East Side screams chic sophistication and this watch is certainly no different.  An instant upgrade to any outfit is certainly a watch with this level of class.  The more I look at it the more I want it… well, my birthday is coming up soon…

Not only do Rosefield have a beautiful array of watches but they also have gorgeous jewelry in a variety of metals designed to mix and match with each watch from £39 to £49.

Rosefield offer free shopping over £40, worldwide delivery within 24 hours and a 60 day return policy.  You can follow them on Instagram @rosefieldwatches

If you would also like to join Rosefield’s Ambassador programme then click HERE and sign up!

Happy Shopping!

Lusso Tan Review

For those of you that follow me on Instagram you’ll know that I attended the 1st Birthday of Lusso Tan in Belfast’s fabulous AM:PM Bar & Restaurant.  It was a fabulous evening that they put on for all of us bloggers and their effort and dedication is surely reflected in their attention to their products.  I was generously gifted the tan a few weeks ago alongside the mitt and I haven’t had it off me since.  At the event I was gifted with the rest of the collection and I would love to share my thoughts on the products with you.

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Lusso Tan isn’t just another tanning product but instead is a 3 Step Ritual to provide you with a long lasting, beautiful, glowing tan.  There is more to just covering yourself in a tan lotion, you wouldn’t apply all your makeup for a night out without cleasning, moisturising and priming, would you?  Well,  maybe you would but you shouldn’t if you want it to last longer and your tan is no different.

With many products under Lusso Tan’s belt it an be easy to get overwhelmed but when you follow the 3 Step Ritual then you’ll be sure to come out with a professional looking tan.

STEP ONE – PREP

Using the Primer Spray will enrich any tan while protecting and plumping the skin.  Before you tan spray a little over the face and body and then pat dry to remove excess.  The spray not only rebalances the skin’s pH level creating an optimum environment for tanning but Organic Witch Hazel refreshes and locks in moisture so your skin doesn’t dry out.

I love this spray and think it’s an amazing addition to my tanning regime and have truly noticed a difference in the longevity of my tan especially on my chest area as I can never get tan to stay even.

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STEP TWO – TAN

Fake it, don’t bake it.  Get your Summer Tan from the tube and save your skin!  With three shades to choose from you are sure to get something to suit your preference.  That being said this lotion is extremely buildable and I am currently wearing the Medium, but easily built up layers to create a darker colour similar to that of the Dark Lotion.

I applied this tan using the Flawless Tanning Mitt which is the softest mitt I think I’ve ever touched and a creates streak free application each and every time.  It dries so fast that you can get dressed almost straight away, which is perfect for me considering I tend to leave everything to the last minute and am in a permanent rush.  As a tan that contains Vitamins A & E and Aloe Vera your skin is sure to remain soft and hydrated.

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STEP THREE – BOOST

Why stop now, you’ve come this far?  Lusso Tan offers a Finishing Touch range that takes your tan from great to amazing.  The Skin Perfector covers imperfections than tan just can’t cover.  I have used this product over my surgery scars on my ankle that tan just glides over and on bruises on my leg from God knows what and it is like a filter has been put over my skin.  I like to smooth it onto the area and blend it out with my finger but you could use the Mitt for this too.

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Also in the Finishing Touch range comes the Shimmer Powder which might randomly be my favourite item from the collection.  Of course it is, I am highlighter mad.  This pot of gold is absolutely stunning on the shoulders and along the collar bones to create that sexy, golden glow as if you just stepped off the beach.  I like to use mine down the shins to create that ‘Yes, I shaved my legs’ look.  Using a kabuki brush dust over anywhere you want and now you’ll have the most perfect, gorgeous, long wearing tan.

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Lusso Tan have a variety of tans as well as the Tanning Lotion including a Tinted Gradual Bronze Tan and a wash off Instant Tan.  I haven’t tried these yet but look forward to adding to my collection!

You can view all these products and more on Lusso Tan’s Website where you will also find a list of their Stockists.

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  • Shirt – New Look — SHOP HERE
  • Skirt – Primark — SHOP HERE
  • Shoes – New Look — SHOP HERE

10 Best Beauty Buys Under £10

There’s no such feeling like purchasing a product that didn’t break the bank and it turning out to be one of the best things you’ve ever bought.  We automatically think that if it’s more expensive then it must be good, but what about all those cheap and cheerful products you pick up from your local Boots or Superdrug?  They are amazing for the price!  Don’t get me wrong, some items are just not up to scratch and I have found that out the hard way!  However, some products are the best I have tried and from eyeshadow to lipstick to foundation these beauties are all under £10!

Make Up Revolution Foundation Stick, £5

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If you have been lucky enough to get your hands on this foundation then you will  know how outstanding it is for only £5!  After Make Up Revolution broke the internet with their concealer which was named as a dupe for Tarte’s Shape Tape it was no wonder that they produced such a high class foundation for an amazing price.

With 18 shades you should quite easily be able to find your perfect colour.  Creating a dewy finish your skin is sure to look healthy and glowing all day long.  I love a full coverage foundation but also love a glowing finish and it can be hard to get a foundation that offers you both, but this one does!  I have several shades as I use a darker one for contouring (when I can be bothered) and sometimes would use a lighter one for highlighting also.  They are so creamy it makes putting on your foundation so easy and they blend like an absolute dream no matter how you apply it, be it your fingers, sponge or brush.

Rimmel Stay Matte Finishing Powder, £3.99

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If you know me at all or have been following my blog for awhile now then you will know how much I love and use this powder.  It sounds ridiculous but cheaper powders tend to feel more powdery.  Duh, right?  But this Rimmel powder still manages to leave the skin feeling silky without feeling clogged with too much product.  It always stays in my handbag for little emergency touch ups and with up to 5 hours wear it has me good to go for the rest of my day.

Bourjois Bronzer Maxi Range Delight Bronzer, £8.99

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I love a big old bronzer.  Bronzers seem to be getting more and more compact these days, almost morphing into contour pans but this Bourjois bronzer is a fab size which not only will it last a long time but your brush won’t get ruined swiveling around a small pan.  It’s definitely a warmer colour which suits for a more tanned look making it one of my go tos for Summer!

Sleek Solstice Palette, £9.99

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I know, I know.  This must be the third or even the fourth time that this palette has featured in my blog but it is that good.  Aside from the fact that you can get 4 highlighters in this palette for less than £10, the product itself is amazing.  With a variation of textures there is something in this palette for everyone, from the two baked powders to the silky shimmer powder you’ll be sure to be extra highlighted.  You really need the tiniest amount or else you will end up like a moon beam.

The Body Shop Brow & Liner Kit, £10

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Back in the day when I used to work in The Body Shop this was my ultimate favourite brow product and to this day still is!  It has a powder and two powders which are great for creating extra dimension to the brow, perfect for when you want your brow to be a little softer.  It comes with a firm double ended brush allowing for precise application and they also sell a brow gel at £10 which is great as well!  A must have for brow upkeep and a bargain too.

Rimmel Lipstick, £5.49

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I am a longtime fan of Rimmel’s lipsticks so it’s no surprise that these appear on my list.  Extremely moisturising with a vast range of colours you are sure to find something that suits.  The Kate Moss Shade 3 is one of my favourite lipsticks ever, and as you can see from my What’s in my make up bag? post it’s never too far from me.

Make Up Geek Eyeshadow, £4.95

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Available from Beauty Bay these eyeshadows are sure to make a hell of a difference to your makeup bag.  With an outstanding array of colours it’s easy to pick exactly what you want.  From beautiful warm colours like Peach Smoothie and Chickadee to the nicest brown shade I have ever seen, Cocoa Bear.  Typically with cheaper eyeshadows it can be a struggle to blend them out but Make Up Geek have their formula nailed and they blend like a dream. With just a few shades you can create a fabulous look!

Maybelline Master Precise Liquid Liner, £5.99

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Eye love this liner.  Sorry not sorry for the pun.  This liner is a brilliant addition to my makeup bag and is up there with one of my new favourites.  The tip always holds pigment and therefore never dries out and creates even lines on even the shakiest of eyelids.  This pen is great if you are looking to be a little more creative with your lines and it creates such sharp lines, perfect for editorial.

Make Up Revolution Blush Palettes, £4

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Yes, yes you did read that right – £4.  Hot Spice is my palette of choice and I was shocked at how pigmented they were.  The fact that there’s 8 shades in the palette for £4 was what made me think they would be terrible.  Honestly, no they are amazing.  I’ll be honest I throw my brush through all the shades and hope for the best because they are all fairly similar.  There is a selection of mattes and shimmers perfect for all occasions.

Nyx Dewy Long Lasting Setting Spray, £7 

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I don’t know how much I believe in setting sprays but once this is sprayed over my makeup I feel instantly energised and cooled down.  It can be a stressful ordeal applying makeup, especially when you are in a rush and I love the little spray at the end to finish it all off.  Available in Dewy Finish and Matte Finish there’s something for everyone.

Updating your makeup bag doesn’t always have to break the bank and hopefully you have seen something on this list that you would love to try or have already.  Let me know your thoughts on these best beauty buys for under £10!

 

Culottes Queen

I never really would have classed myself as someone who would have written about fashion but, here we are.  I don’t think of myself as a fashionista but I just happen to love clothes, I mean, who doesn’t?  So I thought I would write about my favourite item of clothing to buy – culottes.  They have become a fundamental item in my wardrobe and I probably don’t go more than a few days without wearing a pair.

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When you pick a pair of culottes up and look at them on the hanger they can look dull and uninteresting but when you put them up they create a fantastic silhouette.  As someone who is on the curvier side, especially around the hip area I personally love culottes as it creates the illusion of a straighter line in turn portraying a smaller waist.  Whether you are short, tall, thin or curvy culottes are for you, you just need to understand how to style them!

As someone who is smaller I need to be careful when buying them because they can look like regular trousers on me which give me no shape.  Culottes should come to somewhere past the knee but well enough above the ankle.  With culottes I always try and wear heels to give me a bit more height and elongate the leg that’s on show.  If heels are out of the question and it’s flats for you, just make them pointed.  The beauty of culottes is that the focus can go on the shoes as that’s where the eye focuses when wearing culottes.

If any of you follow me on Instagram then you’ll know that recently I went on holidays and basically, all I wore were culottes.  I feel so comfy in them and they are perfect for dressing up or dressing down any outfit.  Any top you would normally wear with jeans, add a pair of culottes and you have an instantly jazzed up outfit.  I am not a jeans person so I think that’s why I rely so heavily on culottes.  That and I can’t find the perfect pair that suits my shape.  I am still on the search for my Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and if anyone can help in my search please leave me a comment!

So, if you don’t own a pair of Culottes trust me when I say that you should invest in a pair!  There is no limit to the styles and patterns you can get, personally I prefer block colours and avoid patterns but below you can find a selection of my favourites!

Missguided Premium Orange Pleat Front Culottes, £30

 

So I can’t take these guys off.  The rich colour goes with a surprising amount of things.  It can be tempting to buy black or navy culottes but this rust colour can take you through Spring to Winter and match pretty much every colour you already have in your wardrobe.  You can buy them HERE.

Primark Orange Culottes, £13

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This pair were perfect for holidays as they were so light and similar to the Missguided pair, they go with a surprising amount of clothes but I loved pairing them with this jacket also from Primark.

Missguided, £30

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I’m just going to go ahead and point out that these 3 images look completely different and yet the only thing different are the culottes.  The cami (also from Primark, £5) and the jackets are the only things that changed.  Can you tell I love culottes yet?  This soft blush pink colour is a must have for Spring Summer and make any look seem effortlessly pretty.  These were also from Missguided however, I can’t find them on the website but there’s a gorgeous culotte jumpsuit in the same colour which I may just have to purchase also… you can buy it HERE

New Look Pale Blue Pleated Culottes, £17.99

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Obsessed with these and again, they are perfect for Summer.  This look would be fabulous if paired with a blazer (see below), draped over the shoulders especially with a nice crisp white short underneath.  This outfit is next on my hit list!  You can buy the culottes HERE and this cute blazer to match can also be found on the New Look website for £13.99 – shop HERE.

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It’s so hard not to buy ones in every colour but the way my collection is going, it’ll not be long before I have to move out to a bigger house for a room with just culottes.  I have a problem.  It can be tempting to pay expensive for culottes but my favourite place to shop for them is Primark and New Look plus they constantly update their clothing selection so everytime I go in, there’s always another pair attracting my attention.

Let me know if you like culottes as much as I do and if you have got a pair that I need to go out and get my hands on!

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Have Make Up Looks Become Too Dramatic?

If you follow me on Instagram then last night you may have seen me post a totally innocent few Instagram stories on my thoughts on certain styles of Make Up that are floating around our social media pages at the minute. I put out a poll asking whether you agreed or disagreed on how I feel that makeups are too over dramatic and over the top.

Since posting my thoughts my inbox blew up. I received all kinds of messages including ones saying ‘Finally, someone said it’ and messages that made me really sad from fellow Make Up Artists who said that these images are hurting not only their business but also their courage and drive to post creative content and it sets unrealistic ideals for their clients because they wanted to look like the girl on Instagram with 4 filters.

I am a Make Up Artist who still to this day sometimes shies away from using the term MUA even though I have been in the industry for 8 years. In my opinion the term Make Up Artist has lost all meaning since make up boomed onto the scene. Our job has become viewed as an easy way to start a career earning money with what’s thought as little to no work.  In an age where people can go to a day course with their favourite artists/instagrammers and then slap MUA at the end of their name, actual Make Up Artists, pre make up boom are suffering. The reality however, is that to be a Make Up Artist requires a lot of work. I am talking early starts, late finishes, dealing with clients, customer service, buying and investing in a make up kit and spending a huge amount of money before you even make money.  Not to mention basically having no social life.

Of course, everyone has to start somewhere but you cannot call yourself a Make Up Artist after you attend a one day course where you learnt one look that suited the model that happened to be there that day.  There are so many looks that can be created and all I seem to see is the same look, repeated over and over again just with different colours.  One of my favourite local Make Up Artists, @heatherallenmakeup_ in response said ‘I agree that they are artistic but when everyone starts doing the same artistic look is gets boring.’  We see so many of these looks that when we see the creative makeups they are now classed as the norm.

The point I am making, or trying to make is that social media has completely blown the role of a Make Up Artist and what normal glam makeup is out of the water. It doesn’t hold the same meaning that it once did and while Beauty Bloggers (hello) and YouTube, etc all have a part to play the one that does the most detrimental damage is Instagram. Instagram, is by far my favourite app and it’s disgusting how often I am on it. That being said when it comes to clients coming in with images of makeup that they want that they have seen on their feeds I am immediately disheartened because no amount of amazing skills or make up products can turn your client into a real life Face Tuned image.

I’m talking smooth, poreless skin with cut creases and halo eyes and triple stacked lashes. Don’t get me wrong, I do love doing the Make Up itself as it allows me to explore an area of creativity that years ago I didn’t even know was possible. The people doing these make ups are so crazily talented, I am not taking that away from them but those makeups are fine for Instagram, but that’s Instagram – your face is real life and an unrealistic standard is being set that regular makeup artists using regular make up struggle to live up to.  Think of this from not even a Make Up Artist’s point of view, as a client you are being lied to by viewing these amazing looks, walking into your Make Up Artist expecting to leave looking like the photo and being bitterly disappointed at the end even though you are absolutely beautiful (with and without makeup).  You didn’t look how you expected because you are not a walking filter.  These makeups only look great from one head tilted angle and tend to look a little strange head on.  Take a glitter cut crease for example, I went out with this look and someone took a photograph of me that wasn’t a posing selfie and I looked plain weird.  I vowed that a regular smokey eye is  my go to for nights out.

I really do pity anyone who is genuinely trying to make it as a Make Up Artist because looking at these images would make me want to cry, filled with the dread that I would never be able to do make up like that. My advice to anyone starting out is do not get put down by these drastic dramatic looks, do make up how you want to do it and I guarantee your clients will love it.  As well as that, do your research and understand different people suit different looks.  Have confidence in your work and believe in yourself, you do not need to copy Instagram to be successful, if anything I think it’s the opposite.

99% of my Instagram feed are dramatic looks because as I say, they are so fun to do. But guys and gals, you must understand the difference between Instagram and real life and set yourself a realistic make up look to ask for. Make up is designed to enhance your own natural beauty, social media makeups have made us lose sight of this. When did it become about making a woman look nothing like herself?

I would love to hear your thoughts on this, do you think that the makeup is too much or do you think I should get over it.  There is so much more I could say about this topic but I’ll quit while I am ahead.  Send me a message and let me know.

You can find me on InstagramTwitter and YouTube

Bare Minerals Blogger Event

Recently I was invited to attend my local Bare Minerals counter for a gloriously, intimate blogger event for just a handful of us.  Even though I write a blog, I still don’t see myself as a blogger as there have been people doing FAR longer than me.  That being said, it’s amazing being thought of as a blogger and I thoroughly enjoy attending these events as one.  Being greeted upon arrival with a slate of chocolates and a glass of prosecco is something I can get used to.  If only I was greeted that way in my house!

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The amazing Kerri Devereux hosted our Masterclass portraying the perfect go to summer look with effortlessly glowing skin.  Taking us from skincare to a full makeup application we learned the how to’s and what we need to recreate this look at home!  I’m not going to spoil the tips and tricks for you but the ladies on the counter are there for you to quiz and learn from at Debenhams, Castlecourt.

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What I am going to talk about however, is all the lovely things that I was treated to in my goodiebag!  I have been trying them out for nearly a week now and I am obsessed.  If I am being honest, Bare Minerals isn’t a counter I would run towards when I walk around a department store because it’s not overly talked about and to me there are no ‘cult’ products that I associate with them (Powder Foundation aside).  I’m quite glad of this because there’s nothing worse than buying something or trying a product just because 200 YouTubers saying ‘it’s amazing’ so I was able to have a completely neutral response to these products.

As you can see from the main photograph, I was absolutely spoiled rotten.  So many things to try, I honestly got home from the event and ripped straight into the bag.  The first thing I tried that night was the Pure Plush Gentle Deep Cleansing Foam, £18.  Normally, I am not one for foam cleansers as I have drier skin however, this did not dry my skin out at all.  The first thing I noticed was the glorious Grapefruit scent washing over my face immediately awakening my skin.  My skin felt so smooth afterwards and my other skincare products went on like a dream.  I have been using it for a week now and still no sign of drying out which means even if you are of a drier skin type then you can still use this.  That being said Bare Minerals have a whole range of cleansers so  you can definitely get the perfect one for you.

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The next morning after the event I sat and stared at everything and thoughtfully decided how I could put all the products on my face at once.  After the luxurious cleansing, I decided to try out the serum that was sampled to us.  The Skin Longevity Vital Power Serum, £48 went on like a dream leaving my skin looking crazy glowy.  It’s a morning and night serum that claims to unleash skin’s vitality and luminosity while nourishing skin with essential minerals and hydration to reveal softer, more supple skin.  I have to say that it felt amazing on the skin and almost cooling on the face which seemed to help calm down the redness that I usually get after cleansing.  I’ve been using it in the mornings rather than just at night just so I get a little longer out of it, but this is firmly placed on my TO BUY list.

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The next item on my list to use just HAD to be the Prime Time Original Face Primer, £24.  I have said it before in previous posts but I am a little bit of a primer snob in that I expect the best from my primers, especially as it’s the product that is supposed to set your makeup up for the day.  I am pleased to say that I really do like this primer but I can’t get away with using it all over my face.  It just happens to dry me out all over and I know that there are other primers that would be better suited to me.  The primer itself is mineral infused and glides onto the skin leaving it silky soft and actually looks amazing over my porous areas.

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The fab girls gave me a sample of the foundation that was used in the Masterclass because all I wanted was that beautiful glow and I was so excited to try it.  The Bare Pro Performance Wear Foundation, £29 is an award winning foundation that claims to leave you with 24 hours wear with full coverage.  My first thoughts on the consistency was that there could be no way you could get full coverage out of it because it felt so thin.  Oh my God, I was so wrong.  The coverage was brilliant especially considering I used it with the Luxe Performance Brush, £24.  The brush is nice and dense which will create a fuller coverage look anyway.  I fell in love with the brush and the foundation almost instantly.  I tried not to get ahead of myself because I wanted to see how the foundation wore before I made up my mind.  It definitely stayed on all day however, moved a little on my chin but after I re powdered I was good to go again.  If that’s my only complaint then this is definitely a foundation to try!

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The Lash Domination Volumizing Mascara, £20 was the next thing I tried and this mascara has the funkiest looking wand.  Normally, I am not one for a plastic wand as I find they tend to leave lashes looking clumpy but this brush separated through every single lash, not a clump in sight!  For once my mascara didn’t smudge down during the day, normally I end up with a little black smudge at the corner of my eye and I was surprised to look in the mirror and see that I was smudge free.

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To add the finishing touches to my Bare Minerals look I applied the Statement Lip Luxe Shine, £18 in the shade Alpha – the most beautiful pop of deep pink, perfect to amp up any make up look and take you from day to night.  It’ll be my go to colour for Summer!

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So there you have it, all the goodies that I received and I honestly can’t wait to go back and buy the rest of the products that were featured in the Masterclass (I see you Invisible Glow Highlighter).  Pop into your local Bare Minerals counter to see all the amazing things they have in store!  If you are local to the Belfast area then you can stop by Debenhams, Belfast and see the amazing team that treated us so well!  Their customer service is always amazing.

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You can book and treat yourself to an amazing service by calling 02890435574

If you have used any of these products then please leave a comment or send me a message and let me know!

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Nu-Skin Products Review

I was recently sent a variety of products to try out from a lady called Maura Gilmore.  For those of you that don’t know her, she is a local Health, Wellness and Beauty Expert with access to award winning products proven to help appearance and health.  It’s important to be happy with your skin and maybe one of these products will do just that for you!

Having tried the samples out I would love to share my thoughts on them with you.

Nu Skin Polishing Peel Skin Refresher

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This exfoliating cream contains Pumpkin Enzymes that resurface and soften the skin and Bentonite Clay removes dead skin cells leaving skin healthy, soft and smooth.  I loved the feeling of this as it went on as it’s the kind of product that you can feel working.  Apply to clean dry skin and leave for around 30-60 seconds until the products feels tacky.  As your rub your fingers in circular motions the products begins to dissolve dead skin cells and removing them.  I have rather sensitive skin so the fact that there aren’t any small beads in it doesn’t leave my skin feeling rough.

Nu Skin Exfoliant Scrub

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For those of you that prefer the little beads in your exfoliator then this would be the better option for you.  Although it has mini beads in it, it contains an Aloe Vera base that conditions and safe guards your hydration levels so you don’t get that dried out feeling after you exfoliate.  Exfoliating your skin is important as it helps to leave a brighter complexion and you’ll be less likely to get blemishes/pimples.  When I used this I found that my pores were immediately unclogged and my skin felt a whole lot smoother.  I actually kept this one for use in the shower and it was so easily taken off.  Simply apply to a clean face and neck with a little warm water with gentle circular movements and rinse with warm water.

Epoch Glacial Marine Mud Mask

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A revitalizing clay mask with sea botanicals that draws out the dirt and impurities from the skin.  Designed for all skin types but I prefer to use this on my oilier areas as I personally find it can be a little drying.  It has a thinner consistency to most mud masks I have tried which is good because you can still move your face when it’s on, most masks make my face feel like a brick!  My face felt seriously smooth and had a beautiful shine off it once I took this mask off.  I find it interesting to watch mud masks change colour (just me?).  As the mask dries on the skin it will turn to a lightish green colour but the dark spots on the mask show you where the dirt is being drawn out of the pores.  COOL.

Nu Skin Creamy Hydrating Masque

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This mask is a nourishing treatment that works to protect the skin from dry and harsh environments by boosting skin’s moisture levels.  This is probably my favourite thing I tried from the products that were sent as the smell alone had me feeling like I was in a spa.  Designed for those with normal to drier skin types this mask has my name written all over it!  The products claims to reduce redness and infuse skin with soothing nutrients from Cactus Extract into the skin for a healthy, beautiful, moisturised glow.  The soothing can be felt immediately and feels almost cold as it goes onto the face which feels so relaxing.  I applied this to dry skin and left on for around 20 minutes, just long enough to watch an episode of Santa Clarita Diet and tissued off, you can also remove with warm water.  I can’t wait to do my skincare regime tonight and reuse this masque.

AP-24 Whitening Fluoride Toothpaste

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I was so excited to try this product because who wouldn’t want whiter teeth?  To be used after each meal or at least twice a day this toothpaste lightens teeth without harmful peroxides.  Not only that but the toothpaste really leaves your mouth feeling clean for all day freshness.  I have used this for about a week now and I find myself using my normal toothpaste and then using this afterwards in the mornings and same as in the evenings.  Containing a proprietary blend of mild abrasives that polishes and smooths teeth without eroding the enamel.  This toothpaste doesn’t contain peroxides or harsh abrasives as these can be harmful to the teeth especially when not used in a professional setting!

A stain reduction test was performed to determine the percent increase in tooth brightness. The whitening effects were measured after brushing with toothpaste.
AP-24® Whitening Fluoride Toothpaste resulted in a 63% increase in tooth brightness.  I definitely notice a difference in the short time I have been using it and I will definitely keep using this.

If any of these products interest you and you want to find out a little more for yourself and maybe even try them you can contact Maura directly and she can sort you out!

CONTACT MAURA on her Be More Facebook or you can EMAIL mauratg@hotmail.co.uk or PHONE 07753354771

 

 

 

Top 5 Pencil Eyeliners

You might read this title of this and go, ‘Really?  But surely everyone has a black eyeliner…’  While yes, this is true let’s face it, there’s always something wrong with the black eyeliners that we own.

For years I suffered with black smudges because I just assumed that’s what happened when you wore a kohl liner.  I dreaded peeking into my compact mirror to see my inner corners bleeding liner.  Fast forward a few years and I uncovered a select few eyeliner pencils that are my go to that don’t cause any of these annoying problems.  Why suffer when your eyeliner can stay perfect all day long?

Before I start, there is a difference between eye pencils and kohl pencils.  I thought I would mention this as every time I talk about this with people their face is blank.  Without going into the science and ingredients an eye pencil is harder and a kohl pencil is a softer material.  Therefore a pencil is great for liner but a kohl is better for smudgier, smokier eyes.  Personally I prefer kohl pencils as when I want to have winged liner I use a gel or a liquid.

Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil, £15.50

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I can always count on this eyeliner when I am in a rush and need a smoky eye, FAST.  With it’s seriously soft tip it doesn’t drag on the eye allowing colour to glide on effortlessly.  A highly moisturising pencil with Jojoba Oil, Vitamin E and Cottonseed Oil allows for creamy, easy application.  Once the pencil is applied however, it stays in place all day without the need to check up on it.

An impressive range of colours will have you weak at the knees the next time you visit the counter, Perversion however is the nicest black shade I have ever seen.

Estee Lauder Double Wear Stay-in-Place Eye Pencil, £18.50 

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Similar to the 24/7 Glide On, Estee Lauder’s pencil is an extremely creamy and versatile eyeliner perfect for eyelids and waterline.  In addition to 12 hours wear it is water resistant allowing it to stay in your water line all day making it the go to for days where you are going from office to party.  The colour in this liner doesn’t smudge out unless you use the smudger allowing for precise application.  This pencil sets very quickly so I wouldn’t recommend using as the base for a smokey eye unless you are working very quickly.  That being said as it sets so quickly there is no fear of it transferring to your upper eyelid.

Again, a wide range of colours to choose from with Onyx as the black.  Might I suggest Burgundy Suede (used in blog picture) as it’s such a beautiful colour and one of my go to eyeliners for clients makeups.

The Body Shop Smokey Eye Definer, £9

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For something a little more defined instead of something smudgier look no further than this pencil from The Body Shop.  The formula glides on and doesn’t catch or pull on your eyelids and gives a perfect line every time.  You can of course smudge it out if you wish as it comes with a smudger on the other end but is great without.  This liner is excellent for those that want and eyeliner look but without the dramatic effect as a subtle look is easier achieved with this liner.

MAKE UP FOR EVER Aqua XL, £16

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This pencil is The Notebook-proof.  You could go swimming, have a crying session, have drink thrown over you or simply wash you hair and this eye pencil will not move.  Definitely on the thicker, creamier side of eye pencils so perhaps not for those looking something natural but this pencil is ideal for someone who is constantly smoking out your waterline.  It blends effortlessly but once that sucker has set it isn’t coming off until it is pried off with your cleanser.

Coming in a variety of finishes from Matte, Diamond, Satin, Metallic and Iridescent there is definitely a finish and colour that will take your fancy.  This is a Saturday Night out kinda eyeliner…

Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajaal Eye Liner Pencil, £2.99

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There are very few drug store eye liner pencils that I would trust but this one from Rimmel has made the cut into the Top 5.  I burn through quite a lot of eye liner and that can wreak havoc on my bank balance so for sheer price alone this pencil is amazing.  I use this shade Jet Black constantly when I am using it as the base for a smokey eye.  I run it all over the eye and blend the life out of it with my Mac 217 Brush creating a beautiful, easy smokey eye.  On it’s own for actual liner purposes it has a tendency to bleed out a little on my eye, this isn’t a big deal so I don’t care but as a base for a smokey eye it’s the one.

So there you have it, a list of my favourite eye pencils that I use for wings, smudgy eye and smokey eyes.  Have you used any of these or do you use one that I need to try – let me know!

You can find my other Top 5 Posts HERE

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I Got Lip Fillers

Before I write anything, I just want to make a point of the fact that I KNOW everyone is naturally beautiful and I KNOW I don’t need to have procedures to change my face. I KNOW.  That being said, I got my lips done because I wanted to.  If that bothers you then you can click off this post, but for those of you who are thinking of getting them done or want to know a little bit about how my lip fillers are then read on…

I live in Belfast and thoroughly done my research before I committed to going anywhere for the procedure.  I searched high and low on Instagram, Facebook and asked friends all about their experiences and who they went to.  I heard horror stories and dream stories and I started to prepare my should I should I not list.

I had been thinking about getting my lips done for a long time now and when I finally decided to take the plunge there was no doubt in my mind  that I wanted to get them done.  A little nervous, don’t get me wrong but excited all the same.  After my research and scrupulously dissecting before and after photos I decided to book in with Lisa Sloan at Simply Be Beautiful on the Lisburn Road, Belfast.  Lisa is an experienced and established professional who holds advanced qualifications in facial rejuvenation and anti aging treatments.  Not only that, but Lisa also has 26 years of nursing experience and 7 years of practice in the aesthetic industry.  I have heard nothing but great things about Lisa for all her treatments and all her photos, including those with lip fillers looked amazing.

Prep

Upon arrival I walked into a beautifully open reception with calm friendly greetings and was handed a numbing cream straight away and told to apply.  The cream felt like how you would imagine, cold and tingly for a few seconds and I definitely got some on my tongue by accident.

Treatment (if you are squeamish maybe don’t read…)

I was so excited by this point but due to the numbing cream I honestly wasn’t sure if I was smiling or not.  Lisa smiled and me and made me feel so at ease and walked me through all the things she had to (terms, conditions, aftercare, etc).  I told her exactly what I wanted in that I didn’t want to end up looking like a TOWIE experiment gone wrong, that I just wanted fuller looking lips and she nodded and told me not to worry.  I lay down on the comfiest bed ever and closed my eyes as Lisa began to prepare.

As the needles went into my lips I honestly didn’t feel any discomfort.  I knew that there was something happening to my lips but thanks to the decent helping of  numbing cream I couldn’t feel much.  I had been given a tissue in case of any eye watering but my eye liner remained in tact!  I had intended to receive 0.5ml of product into my lips but after a mirror was handed to me, I could definitely see a difference but decided to opt for an extra 0.5ml bringing the total to 1ml added.

So ignoring the camera quality and all that, this was a before and after picture of my lips.  As you can see from the before picture my top lip was far thinner than my bottom lip and in the after picture it certainly isn’t anymore!  Obviously, this is a photo of them as they were just done so they have still to come down and reduce the swelling but I was so happy with them.

After

After I had left I came home and thoroughly inspected my lips, then PANIC set in.  I was so worried, being like ‘what if they don’t go down?’ and immediately forgot everything that Lisa had told me about swelling and that they wouldn’t be as red when they go down.  Joel came home and his face dropped but he did his best to calm me down and through laughter he told me everything would be okay.

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This photo was taken the next day and while there is still swelling I was far more relaxed about them the next day than I had been the night before.

One Month Later

A month later and I am still loving them!  While lip fillers may not be for everyone to me it just completes my make up look and makes me feel more confident.  Below are some photos from the last week or so and they have come down greatly but they are still definitely bigger and exactly what I asked for.  I can’t thank Lisa enough for actually listening to what I wanted.

I wanted to write a post about the fact that I have had lip fillers put in because so many bloggers and make up artists talk about how amazing certain lip products are while they have clearly had their lips done and people buy these products because they want to look like that.  While clever lip tricks and certain products can change the appearance of your lips, I think it’s important people know the difference between lip fillers and a lip liner.

I hope you enjoyed reading about this and seeing my before and after pictures.  If you are thinking about getting your lips done or any other treatment I urge you to please do you research and don’t automatically go for the cheapest one just to save money!  Do what’s best for you!

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Top 5 Primers For Dry Skin

Whether you agree with the need for a primer or not, I personally think they were one of the greatest products to come to light out of the recent make up boom.  For those of you that know me, my skin is drier and at the minute the texture of my skin has been playing up.  While there are certain things that only switching up a skincare regime can fix, a primer gives a little short term help to fixing those issues.

I have used an insane variety of primers in my time and while some work great for a few months, inevitably most stop working at what they did at the start.  The list below are the ones that have stuck by my side and done the job they claimed to do.  I use these on myself and I trust them enough to use them on clients whose skin is drier also.

What is primer?  A make up primer is a product that you apply before your foundation (or you can mix with foundation!) to allow for a longer lasting finish.  Not only do primers keep your make up on for longer, but primers typically make your face look smoother and can have other benefits too like hydrating, mattifying, smoothing, etc.  Primers take a little pressure of your foundation and if anything, you’ll probably need less foundation than if you don’t use one.  So there’s that!

Marc Jacobs Undercover Perfecting Coconut Face Primer, £32

I will never forget the first time I bought this as I had read somewhere that this primer was all the rage and I wanted nothing more than to bury my face in it as I am obsessed with anything coconut scented.  I scrambled and saved every extra penny I could as at this point I was at university, a poor student.  Eventually, I bought the primer and upon the first usage my face almost sighed with relief as it was cooling.  If I am going to an event, or know that I need to look like utmost best then this is the primer I use as any foundation I have sits beautifully on top.

The primer hydrates and nourishes thanks to the coconut infused formula including cold pressed coconut water, juice and pulp that forms a natural, vitamin rich barrier between your skin and your makeup.  My skin feels fresh and natural, all day.

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Make Up For Ever Nourishing Primer, £25.50

Make Up For Ever have a vast range of primers that cater to each and every skin type and I find myself bouncing between the Nourishing Primer and the Hydrating Primer.  Where the Hydrating Primer hydrates (shocking) the nourishing primer just goes that extra mile and has a richer, creamier texture which I prefer.  The Nourishing Primer feeds skin, repairing and hydrating all day while anti oxidants actually help to prevent from the elements.  As if that’s not enough, the primer restores elasticity and revitalizes skin creating a more even textured, flawless finish.

Today for example, as I said my skin was feeling a little more textured and so this is the primer I have used today.  My make up has been on my hours now and you can’t tell, my skin still looks and feels seriously smooth.

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Charlotte Tilbury Wonder Glow, £38.50

Before you gasp at the price, give me a minute!  This primer is multi functional and contains an amazing blend of ingredients that can make all the different to your beautiful face!  I bought this originally as a primer but after a few uses started wearing this on it’s own also.  I am off on holidays soon and this will be firmly packed in my make up bag for daily wear!

I absolutely love a glowy finish on my skin but it can be hard to get a product that will give you that finish that lasts longer than 2 hours.  That’s why I am so glad I took the plunge with this product because my make up stays on forever – hey, if it’s good enough for Jamie Genevieve then it’s good enough for me – SEE HERE Jamie Genevieve Night Out GRWM

*NOTE* This is what I am wearing in this picture for this post

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Laura Mercier Foundation Primer – Hydrating, £30

Yes, yes Laura Mercier are so much more than their loose powder.  I like this primer because all the others I have mentioned are on the thicker side and sometimes it’s nice to have products on your face that are a little thinner, especially for days where you don’t want to wear a lot of make up.  Again, it hydrates and leaves the skin nice and glowy while multi tasking to help minimize the appearance of pores, fine lines and imperfections.

I notice that as my make up wears, my make up can tend to settles into lines on my forehead but when I use this primer that doesn’t happen!  So a bonus if any of you struggle to keep foundation out of any little crevices!

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Estee Lauder The Illuminator, £26

The thing I love about this primer is that it is designed for use on top of your make up as well as a primer underneath.  It’ll always be in my kit for events and make ups that require a lot of photography as it photographs beautifully.  Not only that but it really makes your skin feel fresh and awake, so if your skin is feeling very lacklustre and needs waking up then this would be the primer for you.  It’s the only primer that I would probably mix with any foundation to thin out as it doesn’t separate on the skin.

It hydrates, smoothes and illuminates giving you that Hollywood glamorous glow and is one that you can depend on to make your skin look flawless all day long.

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Let me know if you have used any of my favourites or if you have a Primer that you absolutely adore and think I need to try out.

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The Ordinary Foundation Review

Isn’t it the dream for your new favourite foundation to cost less than a Starbucks order?  Well, if you are lucky enough like me then this morning you found it.  Yesterday I received my fabulous brown cardboard box from Beauty Bay and inside I was so happy to see a foundation that I have wanted to try for ages.  Sometimes, it just takes you ages to get around to testing something new, especially a foundation.

First of all, a little bit of background on The Ordinary.  I have used this brand for awhile now but have only used the skincare.  The Ordinary is a brand owned by DECEIM and focus on ‘advanced functional beauty.’  The brand contains a vast collection of effective skincare and makeup with breakthrough technologies and a holistic honest approach.  The brand should appeal to all especially considering DECIEM does not test on animals and does not pay others to do so.

The foundation stands at £5.95 for 30ml which compared to even the likes of Rimmel, Maybelline, L’oreal and other drug store brands  is definitely one of the cheapest.  Price point aside I know the reason people tend to stay away from drug store products are the restricted colour range but with The Ordinary there are 21 Shades available that cater to all skin undertones whether there are pink, yellow and neutral.  I purchased the shade Light 1.2Y on a whim as I normally pick pale yellow based shades and there is a pretty good description on each shade on the Beauty Bay website.

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I love the packaging on The Ordinary products as again, even for the price of it the boxes look so sleek.  The skincare comes in beautiful white boxes and the foundation comes in sultry black packaging.  Breaking into the box (more like ripping into because I was so excited) I pulled out a gorgeous bottle of foundation.  Thankfully, I read the instructions first as you have to shake before use – otherwise I would have had a runny mess on a my face!

Application

The foundation applied like a dream, needing very little it covered my whole face.  When testing out foundations I always use my trusty Real Techniques Expert Face Brush and this allowed this foundation to give me an even, full coverage foundation.  Normally with even my full coverage foundations I find I always have to take 2 pumps to get proper coverage but I needed so little of this foundation in comparison.  So this foundation is going to last me quite a long time!

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Finish & Wear

I had thought it was going to be a matte finish but I was presently surprised to find that it was more semi-matte as I’m not a fan of totally matte foundations.  I put it on this morning at 7am and it’s still on looking as perfect as when I first put it on and I’ve had a bit of a mental day. It hasn’t got any shinier like my makeup normally does and with my dry ass skin the foundation doesn’t gather towards any dry patches.  The foundation didn’t sit in my lines or crease up anywhere either so this foundation is really ticking all the boxes for me.  WINNING.

Removal

One thing that never really gets mentioned when talking about foundations is how easy or difficult they are to get off.  So having just removed the foundation it was so easy to take off compared to how many pads I go through with my other foundations.  There’s nothing I hate more than having to spend ages (and loads of product) on removing a face of makeup.  I used my Estee Lauder Take It Away Make Up Remover like normal and it did an amazing job of taking it off.

*Fear not if full coverage isn’t for you then there’s a more natural coverage foundation available by The Ordinary.  Will definitely be trying this one next! – The Ordinary Serum Foundation*

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Top 5 Bronzers

 

As one of those poor, unfortunate pale folk I rely on a bronzer to give me that gorgeous bronzed glow.  Due to the fact that I am naturally silver skinned I think this is why bronzers are my favourite beauty product and I have an entire drawer dedicated to them.  This will probably be the hardest thing to narrow down to just 5 as I love so many but now as I sit staring at  my drawer of bronzers, there are very few that I view as my die hard, desert island bronzers.  From drug store to high end, read on for my favourite bronzers!

Nars Laguna Bronzing Powder, £29

With the amount of bloggers and celebrities that love this bronzer you can bet your ass this is the first bronzer I ever bought.  It was considerably cheaper when I bought it for the first time, but I’d say I am easily on my 8th or 9th Laguna bronzer.  When I was younger I was obsessed with NARS packaging, I had been so used to drug store packaging and I hadn’t seen anything as sleek and sexy as this.  I then proceeded to buy lots of others shades but I always came back to Laguna.

The bronzer itself gives the perfect summery glow which makes it a necessity for the make up bag for the upcoming months.  Embedded with a golden shimmer it’s definitely a bronzer for someone who wants a stronger finish to give an all over warmth.  The powder is finely milled to give a sheer affect while filling in lines and pores giving an effortlessly smooth finish.  The shimmer is very subtle so nothing like a highlighter, just enough to give your skin a healthy glow.

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The Body Shop Honey Bronze Bronzing Powder, £14

This is the bronzer that I use probably the most often to the day purely because of the price point.  The make up in The Body Shop are probably one of the only items to not have gone up and up in price in recent years.  It gives a very natural finish which is desired for a day time look.  Not only is it beautiful on the face but comes in great shades for the eyes too, making it a perfect addition to your make up collection especially if you bring your bag out and about with you.  I love products that are multi purpose!

The bronzer itself is more on the subtle side so if you are looking for something that will give you a strong colour might I suggest something with a little more pigment, or just build up the colour.  The bronzer is shimmer free, allowing it to be used for contouring also if that takes your fancy.  Not only is the bronzer amazeballs, but it contains Community Trade Honey and comes in 5 shades with a shade light enough for my silvery complexion making it my go to day time bronzer.

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Soleil Tan De Chanel, £40

As I have mentioned I am a pale, silvery skinned gal but when I get my tan on I prefer to wear a little less make up.  When I am in this beautiful, tanned state my go to make up product, never mind bronzer is the Chanel cream gel bronzer.  It is such a gorgeous formula and can be used on it’s own just to enhance the glow or under on on top of makeup.

When I first saved up to buy this foundation I was terrified to use it because I was intimidated by a cream product.  All I had known was powder bronzers and this was a total revelation.  I found it was easier to use when you dab on tiny amounts and blend as you go rather than applying all over and trying to blend it all out.

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Rimmel Natural Bronzer, £5.99

Obviously, a Rimmel product will feature – y’all know I love the smell of these products!  Smell aside, this bronzer never ceases to amaze me at how brilliantly pigmented it is.  It’s called Natural but to be honest I use this as my night out bronzer as the shades are more on the warmer side and give off a lot of pigment.  It’s a waterproof bronzer with velvety soft texture that glides beautifully onto the skin.

There is quick a bit of kick back when I use this product but I don’t really care about that so much as it all stays in the container and can be used again, so not like I am wasting anything – I just always make sure to tap off the excess so as not to cover my whole face in bronzer!  That is not a cute look.

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Make Up For Ever, Pro Bronze Fusion, £28.50

I have spoken about this bronzer already in my Make Up For Ever Favourite Products blog so if you want more details on it you can check it out there.  This is another one of those bronzers similar to The Body Shop’s Honey Bronze that requires building up.  You don’t have to build them up, obviously you can leave them as they are for a fab subtle glow!

Another waterproof wonder from Make Up For Ever makes this another perfect one for your Summer collection.  Not only that, but the Pro Bronze Range caters to those who want matte and/or luminous finish.  The first colour I got was the shade 20M which was a matte finish but I have since updated my collection to include the 35I shade for a far warmer, illuminating finish.

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That brings us to the end of my Top 5 Bronzers even though this list could have gone on to include about 15 more.  These however, are truly my everyday go to bronzers that I use all the time.  Let me know if you have used any of these bronzers yourself or if there is a bronzer out there that is your absolute fave – maybe I haven’t tried it yet!

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Amy xo

Top 5 Concealers

Alas, the one beauty item that everyone and I do mean everyone is after.  Much like the perfect foundation it can be extremely hard to find.  What about settling into wrinkles?  What about giving you wrinkles you don’t even have?  What about colour correcting?  What about lighter or darker?

Concealers are the one item that I really do my research on.  I obsess over YouTube videos, Instagram posts and online reviews to determine which one that I go for.  Like my Top 5 Foundations post, I don’t think it’s possible to have just one concealer that works above the rest.  Similar to how I have a few foundations, I have a few concealers that I like for different reasons.  With that in mind, considering I have done a fair bit of research I have compiled a list of my Top 5 Concealer picks.

Mac Cosmetics Pro Longwear, £18.50

One of the first ‘grown up’ products I ever bought was this Pro Longwear Concealer.  At first I hated it.  I actually detested it and £18.50 was a lot of money for me when I was younger to spend on a concealer.  Anyway, it turns out that 3 pumps of a concealer in a shade that was wrongly sold to you makes your under eyes look like that of a wrinkly old lady.  After heading to YouTube to find out how to apply it, aside from being 3 shades too dark, it quickly became my favourite product.

The concealer itself is a fluid consistency, offering medium to full matte coverage for up to 15 hours.  I now apply it with a beauty blender or a small concealer brush, not my old dirty foundation brush.  It applies like a dream, and gives me enough coverage without sitting in any creases under my eyes.  Even though the concealer sets matte, it definitely needs set with a powder.  I haven’t come across a concealer for the under eye that doesn’t need set with a powder.

I keep this for my night out makeups as it’s a little full coverage for every day.  If you’re someone who likes the natural look, then I would stay away from this one but for long lasting, great coverage it’s spot on.

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Urban Decay Naked Skin Concealer £19.50

This is a perfectly weightless concealer hides even the most stubborn of flaws meanwhile giving a radiant, luminous, demi-matte finish.  Not as heavy as the Mac Pro Longwear Concealer, this is perfect for those who prefer a slightly lighter finish.  When I wear this concealer it melts effortlessly into any foundation I wear it without lifting on the skin or separating against the foundation.

It works no matter how it’s applied, which makes it a winner in my books.  It also sits beautifully even after hours of wear and comes in 14 shades.  I love the applicator of this concealer as it seems to apply to exactly what you need under the eye without the fear of placing too much.  That being said, even if you do put down too much it blends out beautifully and can be layered for a fuller look if desired.

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Make Up For Ever Full Cover Concealer, £21.50

This concealer.  Is the DADDY.  You know when your period is attacking you and your face breaks out all over the show and nothing short of a scarf over your face will cover the spots?  Yeah, well now we have this concealer.  It can cover everything and the beauty of it is you need so little of it.  A little really does go a long way.  Aside from all the usual great things about a concealer, this comes in the size 15ml.  Compared to 9ml of Mac Pro Longwear and Urban Decay’s 5ml you’ll find that for the price of this concealer you definitely get more bang for you buck.

Price aside, the foundation is a little on the thicker side but allows for more multi purpose use.  When I want to wear a lighter coverage foundation but it doesn’t cover all the little marks or blemishes I will always go in with Full Cover to give me a flawless look.  I have used it before when on holidays too so is a perfect one to add to the holiday make up bag as is waterproof.

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Maybelline Age Rewind Eye Concealer Nude, £8.99

If you have tired eyes then this is the perfect concealer for you.  This concealer does more than just cover up your eyes because it’s enriched with Goji Berry and the formula cares for the eye area that suffers most from a hectic social life and lack of sleep.  So if your main concerns are fine lines and wrinkles this is spot on however, you are restricted in your shades as there are only two colours.

I normally don’t like spongy applicators as I find them gross but it’s worth it for this product.  I use this concealer the most much like in one of my last posts talking about how I use L’Oreal True Match Foundation as my throw it on foundation, this is my everyday throw it on concealer.  I find that as well as not sitting in my lines it brightens under the eye giving me a more youthful appearance.  If you are looking for something with a little bit of a better shade range then I would suggest Maybelline Fit Me Concealer as there are 6 shades to choose from.

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Rimmel Wake Me Up Concealer, £6.49 

If any of you know me then you’ll know that I love the smell of Rimmel products, that may be the reason that I like this concealer so much but hey ho.  Another anti-fatigue concealer similar to Maybelline’s but on the fuller coverage side.  Containing peptides and a vitamin moisturising complex this concealer will hydrate under the eye as well as concealing.

There’s not much to say about this concealer other than if you are shopping on a budget and want excellent quality for money then hello, you found it!  It doesn’t crease, I think that’s down to the consistency of the liquid as it’s on the creamier side.  Not only that, but it brightens under the eyes while hydrating.  On me, it doesn’t all day but gets me through a shift at work which is all that really matters!

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You might be surprised to find that the Tarte’s Shape TapeNars Creamy Concealer and the YSL’s Touch Eclat of the world are not in this list.  The reason they are not in this list is because as nice as they are and as hyped up as they are that’s exactly why they aren’t in this list.  HYPE.  Don’t always just believe what you see on Instagram and YouTube, do your research.  Nars for example, all I read about was that the Creamy Concealer was the best thing ever since sliced bread but in reality I found the concealer was dry, hard to blend and at only 6ml to me, not worth the money.  Don’t get me wrong, it was nice and did the job but didn’t live up to the hype.

So there you have it, my Top 5 Concealers, click the links below to read my other Top 5’s.

Top 5 Foundations

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Top 5 Foundations

The perfect foundation?  Does this exist?  I don’t know about you but I have spent years trying to find thee foundation, the one that does it all.  I’m not going to lie to you, I have come very close.  I have a top few foundations that I wouldn’t  go without but none of them I can honestly say are the ONE.

I don’t think it’s possible to have just ONE foundation that’s the one for everyone as everyone’s skin is too different and we have too many different wishes.  For example, not every is oily and dreams of perfect matte skin.  Not everyone is dry and wants luminious skin.  It’s not even that simple, I have dry skin and sometimes my mood will send me towards a matte finish.  Therefore, it’s far too hard to have just one foundation that does it all.  So I have narrowed down my top 5 foundations as it’s not possible to have one!

Yves Saint Laurent All Hours Foundation, £35

An oil free, matte finish foundation that surprisingly does not dry out the skin when worn.  This foundation could cover mistakes of the past, that’s how good the coverage is.  It blends so easily into the skin and you really do need very little.  In fact I find with this foundation it’s best to build it, rather than going in with loads of product.  Using the foundation this way gives an insanely flawless base!  My skin isn’t bad, but is by no means perfect but when I wear this foundation you really wouldn’t know!  I have been wearing this foundation a lot recently and have gotten a lot of  messages on Instagram asking about it because it photographs so well too.

Getting down to the science, the foundation contains a skincare complex and UV filter which is what leaves the skin fresh and smooth.  It contains an SPF 20 and does give a little flashback but what’s a little flashback when your skin looks so fab in real life?

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Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Foundation Stick, £30

You know when you see people walking down the street or even in your magazines and on Instagram and they look fabulously glowy and healthy?  Well, that’s what this foundation will do for you.  I am not even kidding, my skin has literally never looked better than when I wear this foundation.  The texture of the foundation is so creamy that it glides effortlessly onto the skin to conceal any imperfections making it excellent for touch ups also.  As it leaves a satin finish, it’s perfect for my dry skin!

It’s fairly long lasting, for me personally it’s not an all day foundation because it’s creamier it has a tendency to move but so long as you don’t mind setting it with powder it’ll be perfect.  If you love the sound of this foundation but you have oilier skin or want to make sure it stays on all day might I suggest Make Up For Ever Step One Mattifying Primer £25.50 to put underneath.  The foundation itself was created for the latest high definition technologies of the film and TV industry to look invisible on 4K camera and in person so it’s a perfect foundation to add to your collection.

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Rimmel London Lasting Finish Breathable Foundation, £8.99

I first tried this foundation a few months ago when Rimmel very kindly sent me a little parcel and I filmed a first impressions video which can be found here.

So if you want an in depth review on this foundation then you can watch that but this is my favourite drug store ‘affordable’ foundation.  A light to medium coverage foundation which similar to YSL’s All hours is extremely buildable.  The foundation claims to moisturise for up to 25 hours and to be honest, this could be true but I haven’t had to wear a foundation for that long.  If I did I would probably have to claw it off by the 25 hour mark.  Anyway, this is my go to foundation for something to throw on daytime or when I want a little bit less coverage!

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Estée Lauder Re Nutriv Ultra Radiance Makeup SPF15, £76

Every now and then, just like any gal I want a little luxury in my life.  That for me, comes in the form of this Estée Lauder foundation.  A gloriously smooth foundation, this gives flawless radiance to the wearer and a fabulous medium to full coverage.  It glides on effortlessly and feels amazing on the skin.  It coats over all my texture and leaves my skin glowing.  In fact, I normally use this foundation mixing it into the others that I have mentioned to add a little fabulousness to my face.  On it’s own however, it is a stunning foundation.

Seriously luxurious it contains precious micro-fine gems for a flawless finish and jewel-like radiance.  It contains benefits from the Re Nutriv Skincare range by Estee Lauder itself, it reduces appearance of fine lines and imperfections,  enveloping skin in comfort and care.

I’m aware it’s on the pricier side so if you want something similar but not just as expensive then might I suggest Estée Lauder Perfectionist Foundation £41 but trust me, you’ll not regret the Re Nutriv!

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 L’Oreal Paris True Match Super Blendable Foundation, £9.99

I found it pretty hard to pick the last one to complete my Top 5 so I went upstairs and due to the fact that I have two bottles of this foundation on the go at once and a further 3 in the drawer as a back up that this one has made the list.  Without realising it, this foundation is probably my most used.  I love how lightweight it is and it’s another great one to mix into other foundations to lighter/darken.  It’s honestly just a nice foundation for every day.  I use it more as the throw it on, heading into town, going to the shops kind of foundation.  I don’t really use it for nights out as it doesn’t pass the long lasting test for me but is great to throw on to save wasting those that are a little on the pricier side – see Estée Lauder!

The foundation has an impressive 28 shades so there will be something to suit pretty much everyone!

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Note Cosmetics Review

One Friday evening after work I trudged home and coming through my door, it got stuck on something.  Now if you live in Belfast you can imagine my thoughts when I thought someone has shoved a paper through my door and I HUFFED and sighed and turned the light on.  To my surprise there lay a beautiful little pink box, which Joel had left on the floor – good of him.  Inside the box was an array of fab Note Cosmetics products.

NOTE Cosmetics for those of you who don’t know, is a brand with products that are 

       Enriched with essential oils and vitamins

       Paraben-free

       Environmentally friendly

       Dermatologically Tested

       Never tested on animals

So if  you are an animal lover then you will be pleased to see that last one!  Not only all of these things, but the products are extremely affordable.  NOTE is available in selected pharmacies but if there aren’t any near you online is as good as anything.

Luminous Moisturising Foundation SPF15 Shade 5, £7.95

The first product I opened was this beautiful foundation – as soon as I opened the box I had to dig straight into the products and get them on my face!  As well as protecting your skin with SPF15, this foundation also contains Macademia Oil and Sweet Almond Oil.  Due to these ingredients the foundation leaves your skin highly moisturised.  The foundation itself is classed as luminous and I agree having worn it for a few days now.  There are eight shades available in the range and hopefully the brand comes out with more shades soon!

My Thoughts

I love it.  I am a very snobby foundation person and so it can be difficult for me to find one that I am not only willing to try but actually will go as far as writing about it.  I have dry/combination skin and this foundation is honestly long lasting.  I put it on yesterday for example at 7.30am and it was still looking flawless at 7pm that evening albeit a little on the shiny side – not hard when it’s a luminous finish.  I have tried the foundation with and without powder and to be honest the finish is much the same, so if you are someone who doesn’t like a  lot of product you could probably hold off on the powder.

I was SO surprised at the level of coverage this foundation gave me as it felt very thin and lightweight as it came out of the tube.  I would class it as medium to full but you can definitely build on it for a fuller coverage.  The shade I received was perfect to match with my tan which was great but I haven’t seen any of the other colours, hopefully you’ll be able to get one that matches you.

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Full Coverage Stick Concealer Shade 3, £5.50

This concealer is designed for all skin types and any age range and has a very creamy consistency to help hide any nasties that need concealing.  Containing Argan Oil and Soy Protein this helps to protect the eye area of free radicals and environmental factors.  The soya protein also helps strengthen the skins structure by increasing collagenous and hyaluronic acid level.  I know right?  SO much more than just a concealer…

My Thoughts

Again, pleasantly surprised by this product.  After an incident with a Rimmel Concealer Stick when I was younger I thought I had sworn them of for good.  It wasn’t a good look for me when I was younger as I just waved it all over my face including on my lips and I thought I was great.  It seems I have learned a little bit about make up in the 20 years since that point and actually know what to do with the stick concealer.  I tried the concealer under my eyes but unfortunately it creased a little too much for my sad tired eyes but I thought it was amazing for spot concealing.  It now has a permanent position in my hand  bag for emergencies blemishes! 

The coverage itself is amazing and even covers my little red veins around my nose and a seriously red blemish that has popped up courtesy of TOM.  Ladies, you know.  Even though I couldn’t use it around my eyes doesn’t mean that you can’t so if you do try this product then let me know your uses for it!

Mineral Blusher Shade 101, £10.95

A magical blush with a cocktail of ingrediants from Coral Seaweed to Vitamin E allows the blush to leave the skin with a natural healthy glow.  It’s a silky, fine blusher that gives a very light finish which is perfect for those who don’t want to end up looking like Aunt Sally.

My Thoughts

The blusher applies like a dream without looking powdery and dry.  A little luminosity comes off it which is again perfect for my dryer skin.  There isn’t much to say about blushers but this one gets my vote and I spy a nice peachier shade online that i’ll probably buy now too… 

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Precision Eyeliner, £7.95

An eyeliner pen that is designed to give precise application with no muss no fuss, perfect for those that like a bright black line.  The liquid formula sets very quickly to leave a waterproof finish that should last all day.  

My Thoughts

Obsessed.  This is a brilliant liner, it’s very hard to find a liner that can leave you with a mistake proof finish but here you go… found it!  The liner itself is a thin formula which is good for no cracking lines!  Try to avoid going over and over your line as this will lead your liner to being too thick and will therefore crack and not last as long.

I love my NOTE Cosmetics products and can’t wait to try more in the future.  Leave me a comment or send me a message to let me know whether you have tried any NOTE Products yourself!

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Top 5 Highlighters

Whether you like your glow subtle and daytime appropriate or whether you like your glow to be seen from the International Space Station then you have come to the right place.  Highlighters are probably the item of makeup that I have tried and tested the most considering it’s the most requested item when working on clients.  Dewy, wet, beaming, luminous, radiant, glowing and gleaming are the words people want to hear when someone is talking about their skin and that’s arguably all down to highlighter.  You might love it or hate it but there is no doubt that adding a little pop of highlight can make all the difference.

Of course, highlighting in the make up industry has been around for decades upon decades and this glow hasn’t only come around in recent years.  However, as everyone is now a mooah all the tricks and tips of the trade have leaked out for anyone and everyone to use.

With so many highlighters available from so many different brands it can be hard to truly find the best one for you.  With that in mind I have compiled a list of my personal Top 5 Highlighters so if you are in highlighter limbo and have no idea which highlighter to go for, or you simply want to add another to your collection then scroll down for more!

  1. Mac Cosmetics Extra Dimension Skinfinish £25.50
    More specifically the shade Oh, Darling.  If you are a regular viewer on my Instagram or even on my YouTube channel you might know that this highlighter is probably my most used item, let alone highlighter.  I get carried away and honestly out it everywhere.  The highlighter itself is one of the most stunning sights.  I myself prefer anything warm toned so that’s why I tend to reach for this baby a lot considering the gorgeous, golden glow it leaves on your skin.  If you are after that perfectly wet, sexy sweaty skin then this is the highlighter for you.  I do find that the brush you use is important for this one as it is such a strong colour I find it best using a fan brush like the Make Up For Ever Fan Brush 120 (£21.50) as it doesn’t apply too much product causing the tin man look.

2. Sleek Solstice Palette, £9.99

Before I even begin – this is the BEST highlighter for the price of it.  So if you are someone on a budget and looking a little more bang for your buck I am telling you look no further.  Congratulations, you have found the perfect highlighter.  My jaw hit the floor the very first time I used this palette, I couldn’t believe a highlighter that cost me less than £10 was this good.  Price aside, the highlighter itself is unbelievable.  Now, inside this palette there are 3 powder shades (two baked and one shimmer) and one cream shade.  I’ll be honest when I say that I have never touched the cream one, only by accident when I have been getting ready in a rush but I use the powder shades nearly every day.  It’s an extremely strong palette so it’s not for the faint hearted!  If you only like a light bit of highlighter please do just take a small amount as I have known myself on occasion to go totally overboard.  There are not many drugstore products other than foundations that I repurchase because there are so many out there to try, but I am on my fourth solstice palette.  I also love the packaging – that’s what sold it to me in the first place!

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3. Estée Lauder Victoria Beckham Modern Mercury, £55

I may be being biased considering my love for former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham and her outstanding line with Estée Lauder but this highlighter certainly had to appear i my Top 5.  The second I got it I ripped through the packaging and I nearly wept and how beautiful it was, I was almost scared to ruin the beauty of it.  I got over myself pretty quickly, grabbed my Illamasqua Highlighter Buffing Brush (£26) and delicately placed this beautiful creamy powder on my cheekbones.  It was love at first sight!  I keep this highlighter for when I don’t want my cheeks to be so wet looking, it’s is perfect for those of you who like to keep it a little more on the ‘natural’ side while still looking gorgeously glowy.  As I wrote this I got so excited about it that I ran upstairs just to check on it, make sure it was safe, swatched it and came back down… obsessed much?

4. Iconic London Illuminator Shine, £30

I used to hate cream or liquid illuminators.  Ladies and Gents, that was before Iconic launched their illuminators.  I’ll be honest, I haven’t quite nailed the application like some of the beauty gurus on Instagram and YouTube – how to they look so attractive dripping it down their face?! – but, I am quite happy throwing it all over my face any way I want.  I love this product for two reasons… it is fantastic as a primer underneath your foundation as it creates a serious glorious shine through your foundation.  Not only that, but it’s beautiful on top of your foundation – even over powder.  It’s the only liquid highlighter I have come across that does not lift or disturb ANY foundation that lies underneath.  There’s nothing worse than spending ages bouncing your foundation in to your skin to then use something that lifts your hard earned work.  It comes in a few shades, I use ‘Original‘ and have ‘Glow‘ if I am using it to darken foundation or use as a bronzer.  When adding on top of your foundation, might I suggest using a beauty blender if you have one as it sits beautifully on the skin.  I use the Real Techniques Miracle Complexion Make Up Sponge (£5.99).

5. Make Up For Ever Artist Face Color H102/H106, £18

The thing I like about these highlighters more than anything are their compactibility and ease of use.  The Artist Face Color collection are magnetic and so can be swapped and changed into different pans and carriers, as a Make Up Artist this is extremely handy for heading to and from events, clients, etc.  Not only are they then refillable but the product itself is beautiful!  They have a vast range of highlighters, matte and shimmery to blushers and bronzers and contour shades that can be placed and made into a palette of their own.  Focusing on just the highlighters, they are extremely buttery and so blendable that it doesn’t require a lot of work.  My favourite colour is H106, again a warm golden colour,  and it’s the only highlighter I have that looks like skin.  All the others have that obvious highlighter look but this one in daylight looks like it could really be my skin that’s glowing.  Even the Victoria Beckham highlighter has that hint of glitter that lets slide that it’s a highlighter whereas the Make Up For Ever is so smooth that it looks like skin.

The list could go on however, these are the highlighters that I use on a near daily basis and are worth bringing into your own make up bag.  If you have any other highlighters that you think I might not have tried please send me a message as of course, I would love to try them!  If you have used any of the highlighters I have mentioned send me a message as well and let me know what you think!

Til next time,

Amy xo

How To Grow Out Your Bangs In Style

I don’t know about you, but I am one of those I love my fringe, I hate my fringe, I love my fringe, I hate my fringe kind of people.  So I am forever getting a fringe, then deciding that I am bored and need a change.

If you have ever graced your head with the presence of a fringe then you know how difficult and moreover, annoying it is to grow out when you don’t like it anymore.  I am here to give you some top tips on growing out a fringe in style as growing it out can be a huge pain in the ass.

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Depending on how you want the end result to look will depend on how you grow them out so I really only know what I do to keep my hair looking cute.  If I want my bangs to eventually taper off the to the side then you are going to want to keep trimming your fringe in the middle only à la Alexa Chung.  This will not only keep your hair out of your eyes but when it is long enough, it will be easier to sweep to the sides.

Currently I am trying to create a side fringe so I have my hair clipped back with a bobby pin until it is long enough to take down.  When it gets a little longer then I will have the option of having cute little hairstyles instead of a boring clip.  Whether it’s keeping it up with a half knot on top of my head or the many different styles of plaits starting at the base of the fringe my hair will get more interesting with every millimetre of hair growth.

 

It’s a dark few weeks when you decide to grow out your fringe but with commitment I know you can pull through!  If in doubt, hair spray my friend.  Hairspray.  I always use L’Oreal Elnett Precious Oil Hairspray (contains Argan Oil to help with smoothing and shininess) or the Supreme Hold Hairspray.

Happy fringing!

 

Long Nail Problems

One of my favourite things to do to relax is sit and get my nails done.  There is something extremely soothing about sitting in a little chair, picking the perfect colours to wear for a few weeks.  I could almost fall asleep in the chair.

If you are local to me or around the Belfast area then you should take advantage of my gal Cara at @clawed_by_cara on Instagram.  She works out of Topshop, Victoria Square and all images in this blog post are hers, just so you can get a little snippet of how amazing she is!  I will leave more of her details down below!

My favourite style to get on my nails is anything long.  The longer the better however, having long nails can really get in the way of normal day to day activities.  Let’s start with the one that is affecting me right now…

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Typing

I have to type like my grandmother would type, almost on the tips of my nails because they are so long and so it takes me about twice as long to write a post than if I had short nails.  Not only that but it makes a horrendous noise when a nail tip collides with the keys, to the point of extreme annoyance.  Don’t even get me started on typing a message on my phone… Worth it.

Moisturising

Moisturising the body is important but is so hard to do with nails like mine.  It always gets stuck under the nails and is rank.  Then you have to go through the process of picking it all out.  Worth it.

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Clothing

I have had to modify my wardrobe so that it doesn’t include anything with a clasp otherwise I would have to set my alarm in the morning for half an hour earlier.  I am not a jewelry person because I favor nails over bling.  Worth it.

Clothing 2.0

Jeans.  More specifically, new jeans.  I can’t even deal with the thought of trying on new jeans in a fitting room never mind the fear of getting my nails caught or stuck in the zip.  Worth it.

Washing Hair

Now obviously as the nails grow if you don’t get them done, they can

25038188_2024978707512312_4520655432129183744_nstart to chip away, etc.  In the days leading up to nail day when you wash your hair there is no feeling more horrid that having a great time feeling like a Herbal Essence advert when AGH there it is… your hair gets tangled underneath your nail extension, then you have to drag it out with a harsh slam back into reality standing there in your own damn shower.  Worth it.  Long nails forever.

 

 

Itching

We all have to have a little stratch every now and then, itchy head, itchy finger, itchy boob, whatever.  This is totally fine and normal.  What isn’t normal is having a scratch and then looking at yourself and realising you are now covered in a tonne of red marks.  I swear, you look like you have been mauled by 11 kittens.  Not a good look but again, worth it.

Earrings

Small studs? Forget about it.  I’ve been subjected to wearing J-Lo worthy size earrings because my nails can’t get wrapped around the backs of studs.  Worth it.

Dropping money

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Okay, I live in a city centre.  My money is not expendable, neither is my threshold for embarrassment when I drop money, or anything for that matter and I can’t pick it up.  Picture it – I am bent over ass in the air struggling to pick something up.  I’ll be honest, sometimes I’ll just leave it because my nails can’t take that kind of pressure.

 

All jokes aside, all the goodness that comes with long nails more than make up for the lil problems we gotta deal with on a daily basis.  I love having long nails, let’s face it they are kind of like having a Swiss Army Knife at the end of your fingers.

CLAWED BY CARA

Instagram @clawed_by_cara https://www.instagram.com/clawed_by_cara/

Facebook Clawed Nail Bar https://www.facebook.com/clawedbycara/