26 Things I Learned In 26 Years

Hello Readers,

This one comes to you not from a place of ‘do what I do’ or ‘my way is the right way’ but, simply these are a collection of points that I have learned over my 26 years – fast approaching 27 – on the planet and how I have survived this long.  If any them happen to make you feel a little better, more centered and generally happier then brilliant, if not well I am sure the read will pass the time.

  1. Cherish your friends and family.  I cannot stress this enough because to mad lib Kelly Rowland, when life takes over it’s easy to get swept up in day to day life.  Don’t forget about the ones who loved you  before your current distractions ie. Binge watching Stranger Things instead of eating family dinner.  Don’t roll your eyes at your mother when she tells you to phone your Grandparents because one day, not everyone will be around that dinner table or at the other end of a phone call and you will regret the time not spent together.
  2. Don’t give in to peer pressure.  Obviously, you say?  Think back… how many times have you done something just because someone else did it?  From small things to the biggest of things, never let anyone influence you heavily enough to sway your opinion from what you want and don’t want to do.  Your friends are going to Uni?  Great, you don’t have to right now.  All the troops are going out on the sesh?  So what?  Make every decision because you want to, don’t be a follower.
  3. Nobody is perfect.  No body is perfect.  For the longest time I felt so uncomfortable in my own skin.  It took a lot to get over judging myself based on appearances and how I looked in clothes, what way I had my hair, etc.  Now?  How you see me is how I am.  I worked hard to become confident no matter what size I am, what my skin is doing and how those jeans look on me.  Years ago, I would use bags to cover my stomach and drown myself in clothing that was unflattering to try and hide what I thought were ugly parts of my body.  Ironically, the size I was then is now my goal weight and even though I know changes can be made for a healthier lifestyle – I remain confident in myself as I am.
  4. It’s OK to make mistakes.  As Bob Ross once said, “we don’t make mistakes, we have happy accidents.”  It’s down to those happy accidents in the last 26 years that I have the personality that I have, the views that I have and I honestly don’t regret a single thing.  Even the really bad mistakes.  As any right minded adult would have told you when you were younger ‘mistakes are there to be made’ and it’s from those mistakes that we learn and grow.  Basically, regret nothing.
  5. Never apologise for being yourself.  This is something I realised that I can do recently.  To me, I am unapologetically me – I shouldn’t have to explain myself to anyone, or have to apologise for the actions that I do.  Unless the actions you do are horrific, but on the whole I will not apologise for who I am.  If you don’t like it, then it won’t affect me if I don’t see or hear from you again.  Life is short, I will not waste it apologising.
  6. ‘It’s not like it is in the movies.’  Sometimes it is.  Some will tell you not to get hung up on looking for that fairy tale movie kind of life.  I’m telling you, never give up.  Who says your life can’t be like a movie?  Make your own God damn movie.  Our lives are exactly like the movies, it’s just that a movie is 90 minutes or so long compared to a life of 90 years or so (hopefully).  Don’t rush, your movie scene is coming and when it does and you find what you have been looking for all that heartache and uncertainty will all have been for something.  It led you to this point.  Granted, Ryan Gosling or whoever your on screen crush is (John Cusack) will probably not pop up but something or someone even better will.
  7. Be. Happy.  Find what makes you truly euphoric and surround yourself in it.  This is why my house is filled with fairy lights – Joel drew the short straw when we moved in as I pay for the TV each month but he pays for the electric… sorry.  Whether you take 10 minutes out of your day to do a crossword puzzle or you go for a walk to clear your head or you just simply watch your favourite TV show to be happy – I recommend you do it.  It’s the only way we will actually get through our day.
  8. Dance.  Not only is it seriously fun but research shows that dancing can actually improve your mental health.  I’m not saying you need to go out and take ballet lessons but dancing is freeing, and so fun.  I dance while making dinner, standing in work, doing my makeup and even when I am not listening to music I break out into spontaneous dance.  I went out last night sober as a judge just so I could dance.  That’s dedication.
  9. You don’t have to be married young like your Facebook friends.  A new day, a new engagement or pregnancy blasted all over social media from people 23 and under.  While this is perfectly normal and acceptable, it doesn’t mean everyone has to be at it.
  10. You don’t have to pick one thing to be good at.  When I was in school I thought I was going to have to label myself as one thing career wise.  Like, people are good at cooking and are a Chef, people are good with math so they are an Accountant. Why do we have to pick one thing to be good at?  I am a Make Up Artist, that’s not all I am.  I learned that I am good at loads of things and don’t want to label myself as just one.
  11. It’s OK to not make picture worthy dinners.   Leading on from the last post, this is something I am not good at.  Don’t get me wrong, I can feed myself (a lil too much) and make tasty dinners but they look so unappetising whereas every plate of food on Instagram and Pinterest looks like it walked straight off an à la carte menu – and that’s ok!  I’m just surprised I haven’t burned the house down.
  12. Surround yourself with people that will support your interests.  One of my earliest memories is using my grandparents wooden staircase as a table, my legs fit through and I would sit there for hours upon hours drawing.  Drawing anything.  I was a very creative child and didn’t come from an overly creative family.  SURE, they liked my drawings and told me I was good but when I got to secondary school and I was doing Art at GCSE and A Level for example, I became more of a hindrance.  My art got in the way, it covered the dining table and was a mess, basically.  I wasn’t encouraged to do anything with my love for art and it was treated as a hobby.  7 years later, I can’t help but wonder where it could have taken me career wise had I stuck with it or been encouraged.  My point is, whatever your passion is and whatever makes you happy (see #7 again) surround yourself where possible with people who encourage and nurture.
  13. Pancakes & Pizza.  Are my happy foods.
  14. Social Media is bullshit.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s amazing and the impact it has had on our lives is detrimental to our relationships and businesses but all in all, a lot of it is bullshit.  More specifically, the lifestyle gurus and the people you follow on instagram because they talk about how amazing their life is and how they got their shit together, they are here to motivate you and help you get your life on track too.  Bullshit.  They are normal people, with normal lives with Final Cut Pro and Photoshop.  Do not compare yourselves to strangers on the internet.  Get off the app and go live your life.  I post make up on my Instagram – I do not have a made up face all the time.  I am sitting in sweats and a tshirt that should have been in yesterday’s wash and I have yet to remove last night’s crumbly mascara from my under eye.  It’s 12.34pm.  IDGAF.
  15. Don’t resent your job.  We all have our bad days, do not get me wrong but just remember this, if you are unhappy in it – get a new job.  Your job pays for your rent, car, clothes, heating, food and drink.  Think of those less fortunate unable to get a job, are homeless and starving (I know, I know… dramatic) the next time you moan about getting paid to be somewhere.  Also, remember you are more than likely replaceable so be careful who you moan to.
  16. Listen to music you like.  My Dad introduced me to some of the greatest music I have ever heard and I will be eternally grateful to him for that.  In school, I was made fun of for liking artists like Stevie Wonder, Paul Weller and Elvis Presley while everyone else was in love with some boy from 5ive.  Because I was made fun of I tried to pretend that I didn’t like the music I liked.  Oh God, I have to stop this is making me sound like a sad child.  The point is, don’t listen to music or watch movies just because the are the norm.  Listen and watch because you want to.
  17. Teenagers are so annoying.  On the bus, on the street and probably in their own houses they are so annoying.  I like to think that when I was that age I wasn’t as annoying as they are but the reality is that if anything, I was probably more of a pain in the arse than all of them put together.  I think I am jealous… youth! Yoooouth!
  18. The ups and downs of getting ID’d.  When I was Under 18 it caused me to sweat profusely when I was ID’d because I would hate getting denied.  There is very little more humiliating than having to put back the alcohol that you were denied.  18 years old hits and sees a smug Amy walking into Winemark and skulking out with a a large bottle of WKD and West Coast Cooler because honestly, that’s all it took.  Skip forward to now, and I can’t even get ID’d getting into a damn nightclub.  I told the security guard last night that I didn’t have ID, sorry and he simply shot me down with ‘and? on you go’.  I’m done.
  19. It’s OK to not be OK.  Yes, although you should always strive to be happy, live your best life, bla bla bla…  It is still OK to not be OK.  It’s OK to want to have a duvet day.  It’s OK to do nothing on your day off because you’re too tired.  It’s OK to struggle, to reach out and talk to someone.  Without this blog post taking a turn, just promise yourself that if you are having a bad day you will talk to someone and not let it eat you up inside.
  20. Primark leggings are not your friend.  I learned the hard way that they are see through and I need to stop buying them.
  21. Failing is normal.    When I flopped out of Uni, I thought this was the worst thing but as my mum told  me everything happens for a reason.  J K Rowling (hero) in her twenties was broke, suicidal and felt like she was failing.  As of last year she is worth £650 million.  Steve Jobs was fired.  Everyone fails at something, it’s having the courage and the strength to pick yourself back up and try again is something that I learned how to do in my twenties.
  22. Take care of yourself. Take that vitamin, eat that veg, walk that ass, buy the better skincare and take better care of yourself. The inevitable is happening, you are getting older. That McDonald’s you ate when you were 16 evaporated off your hips, and now it clings to them like white on rice. In order to have a happy, long life you may need to make some changes!
  23. Opinions are opinions. Believe what you want to believe and respect that others will not have the same opinion. From what kind of apple is best to politics, listen to others opinions.
  24. Save. Save what you can, when you can. My advice? To set up a direct debit to a savings account for yourself no matter the amount. It all adds up and when the time comes that you’ll need a few extra coins it’ll be there waiting for you.
  25. Sleep. It was uncool to have a bedtime when you were younger. Now it’s the part I most look forward to. Not only does it feel great climbing into bed, especially with new PJs and fresh sheets but a good night’s sleep really does contribute to our overall health. So away and have a nap!
  26. Love yourself. Similar to a few points already but I just really mean it. Love yourself for everything that you are and everything that you do. Once you accomplish that my friends, you can accomplish anything.

Happy living,

Amy xo

Beauty Must Haves

Whether you are a barely there make up wearer or a Drag Queen there are a few styles of products that everyone must have in their make up bag.

My make up bag changes with whatever beauty counter has had a free gift on, so every month I have a new multi coloured bag to pull all of my unnecessary lipsticks out of.  Obviously, I am more of a self confessed beauty lover and may have more than many when it comes to make up.  Even so, I still have my ‘Desert Island’ products that I would never be without.  This isn’t so much a ‘these are the exact products you must have’ post, more of a ‘you need something like this’ post.

Let’s get started…

  1. Primer.  I am sorry, but I couldn’t bare to touch my face without having at least something separating my skincare from my makeup.  You wouldn’t put a coat of Dulux on without priming your wall first, so treat your face with the same respect! I have an ever growing collection of primers however, so long if you have one in your makeup bag, then you’ll have amazing long lasting make up all day long!  A few old faves of mine range from the Nyx Born To Glow Illuminating Primer to Make Up For Ever Hydrating Primer.  I use these two religiously considering I have extremely dry skin and love a drop of radiance.  If you are more oily can I suggest Rimmel London Stay Matte Primer or Nars Pore & Shine Control Primer as I have used both on clients with oily skin and the feedback has been excellent. Happy priming!unnamed
  2. Liner. I don’t care whether it’s a pencil, liquid, gel, powder or cream based product you owe it to yourself and to your eyes to purchase a perfect liner.  I personally am a fan of liquid and gel, I own very few pencils.  The pencils I do have are for enhancing eyeshadow looks however, for that perfect feline cat eye you have to have a fabby liner to help you along the way.  I have gathered a disgusting collection in my time so far as a makeup artist.  I can’t stray from Mac Blacktrack Gel Liner as I have tried them all on the market and this is the only one that takes the cake, guys.  Liquid liner on the other hand, I have a few favourites for different reasons.  My advice is pick the style that’s easiest for you to use and then perfect it! My tried and tested liquid liners are Maybelline Master Ink Matte Liquid for those  that perfer a pot, Charlotte Tilbury Feline Flick or Kat Von D Tattoo Liner for those that prefer a pen style.yup
  3. Red Lipstick. Yes, you.  There will come a time in every woman’s life where she will all of a sudden need to go from day to night and god forbid all you have is a bunch of rolled up tissues and an empty bottle of Diet Coke in your handbag.  You will praise the day your read this article and you went and purchased an emergency red for such an occasion.  I always have a red lipstick in the zippy part of my  handbag, even in bags I am not using that day!  I have a red stashed in every handbag just incase the need for it arises.  I like to have a variety of my reds in different levels of intensity as I don’t always want to look like an emoji.  For those of you lip-cheek-stain-1051883-003redpomegranate-1-640x640who are shaking thinking about a red lipstick, why don’t you invest in a stain like The Body Shop Lip & Cheek Stain in ‘Red Pomegranate.’  Not only is this product the tits, it’s  multi functional and a bargain at £8.  It gives you that ‘your lips but better’ effect without going full of Marilyn Monroe.

For those who like a middle of the road, Goldilocks perfect style of red I can all but suggest Charlotte Tilbury again with her Hot Lips range in the shade ‘Tell Laura.‘  This is a gloriously fabby, orangey red which is seriously flattering against most skin tones.  If something a little less bright is your bag Estee Lauder Pure Color Envy in ‘Envious’ is a universally loved shade.  It gives just enough coverage on the lips without going overboard.

Myself on the other hand, when I wear a red my GOD I wear a red!  As if you can’t tell that already from my profile picture… which by the way is Rimmel Stay Matte Liquid unnamed (4)Lipstick in ‘Fire Starter.’  I am usually a Mac loving Ruby Woo, So Chaud wearing big red lip wannabe superstar.  If you are looking one red lipstick to rule them all make it Ruby Woo, Mac.  Countless times it tops the charts as the best red in the beauty world.  If it were a singer it would be Ed Sheeran.

 

4. Spoolie brush.  You have just got to trust me on this.  When I used to talk about a Spoolie Brush pre-Cara Delevigne I would get laughed out of the place.  Well, how you like me now?!  A bigger bushier brow is the first thing my clients draw  my attention to (as if I didn’t see…) is their brows.  ‘Oh, forgive my brows I am getting them done next week’ or ‘I know, there’s hardly anything there I shaved them when I was 5.’ All I can say is, brush those hairs into place and it’ll be  like your face has changed in an instant.  The best thing about this post is that if you dont’ want to spend money on a brush you can buy a pack of disposable mascara wands and they will do the exact same thing!  I do however float between Make Up For Ever Double Ended Brow and Eyelash Brush and Mac 204 Lash Brush. If you currently skip this step, please I am begging you – even if you have 3 hairs, do it! The difference is crazy.

5.  Bronzer.  Ah duh, who doesn’t love to transform themselves into a gorgeously, glowing glamazon who looks like they have lived in Dubai for the last decade?  I know I do.  Not much I can say for bronzer, to me bronzer is kind of like pizza in that even a bad one, is still a good one and you can make do with it.  I like having small compact ones that I can take around with me, preferably one with a mirror (vain much?).  Bronzer is great on the eyes too so don’t forget how multi functional this product is too!  My current favourites are Mac Give Me Sun, Make Up For Ever Pro Bronze Fusion 20M and Chanel Soleil de Tan for those cream/gel bronzer lovers.  Nyx’s Make Up Matte Bronzer is a great alternative for those on a budget (or for those prone to smashing bronzers… guilty).unnamed (1)

6. Setting Spray. Yes, this may be extremely unnecessary for some and I thought so too until a few years ago, a lovely girl at Urban Decay talked me into getting a setting spray.  I owe her.  A lot.  Setting spray changed my whole makeup game… not only does it feel refreshing AF, but sprays genuinely help the longevity of your makeup.  WHY wouldn’t you want that?  Again, I used an extreme variety of setting sprays however, that’s now mainly down to the fact I am enjoying collecting them.  I like to look at them all on my shelf.  It’s very satisfying getting to the end of a makeup application and dusting a decent bit of spray over your face to help lock in all that effort.

I use setting sprays to dampen my beauty blenders before application and my brushes before I use certain eyeshadows.  Obviously, I can use good old H2O for that but why would I when I have an array of sprays?

First up, I love the Mac Fix Plus however, as setting sprays go it doesn’t set much?  To me it just adds a little hydration and takes away that powdery cakey look from foundation.  Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray is always a firm favourite and the first spray I ever bought (thank you lady).  Make Up For Ever

unnamed (2)once again getting a mention for their Mist & Fix Setting Spray, a spray that both sets and hydrates – DING DING DING – Winner! Basically every counter and brand have a setting spray on the market so my advice is pick a brand you love and try out theirs.  Your skin will thank you.

 

 

 

Now, that’s quite enough from me.  This post is now longer than the majority of essays I have written for school but with a far nicer content!  Please comment and let me know what your must have products are because I will more than likely head out and buy the damn thing!

Also, let me know if you end up with anything I mentioned and tell me how you get on, I would love to hear.

Thanks,
Ciao Bellas xo

SKINKISSED SERUM – Remember you can still get 20% your order from the Skinkissed Website on their fantastic serum with the code cosmetics.junkiee-20 

TO USE – enter code at checkout

 

 

Much Ado About Nothing

Guten Tag WordPressers,

I have nothing of interest to actually say and no end game of writing.  I just haven’t posted in awhile and don’t want my little tiny following to keep themselves up at night wondering about my well being.  Don’t fret petals, I’m right here.

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So, it’s a Friday night and nearly 10pm.  Most females my age are out partying with friends celebrating the end of yet another week while I am lying in bed.  A place that I have been since 6pm.  Sad, isn’t it?  The truth is Joel (my glorious other half) is at an Ulster Rugby match with the boys and I thought I would take tonight to be extremely productive and look after myself.  Instead, knowing full well my Personal Trainer of only 3 weeks might kill me, I ordered a pizza.  I ate it in bed with a Diet Coke and watched Bridesmaids. It was excellent and I have absolutely zero regrets (LIE).

This means that I haven’t scrubbed off my tan, painted my toenails, moisturised my entire body head to toe, put on the expensive face mask I bought, ran my new hair mask through my hair or let’s be real here, showered.  *EDIT: the boys have just come home and i’m compromised – I look like a hag and have pizza sauce on my white top.  I was so chill, now I’ve been banished away back to the bedroom (as IF that’s a problem).

Having fled the living room where I had resided to edit some videos, listen to music with my fancy ass candles lit in my zen atmosphere I am now at the scene of the pizza crime feeling very naughty – in fact, I am away for a shower for my sins. BRB.

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Ok, I am back with dripping hair but I had a fantastic time in the shower.  It was scalding and I have successfully burned away take out guilt.  Back to avocado and lettuce tomorrow!

Where was I…?

Oh, yea – I was talking about nothing.  I hope all the fun girls my age with a life don’t have too bad a hangover tomorrow morning (lol jk) while I am in work painting faces tomorrow.  Oh yea, work tomorrow – I best be off – I definitely need my beauty sleep considering I still look like Ursula the Sea Witch.

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MWAH.

Peace Out xo

 

REMINDER – If you read my last post and want to try out the Skinkissed Serum then click the link at the bottom of the blog post

Use discount code cosmetics.junkiee-20 to receive 20% off your order 🙂

Skinkissed La Meor Vitamin C Serum Review

Hello friends,

I know, I know… it’s a long title.  I am very excited to bring you this post as for once, I have researched something and actual given a product a fair chance for me to see a difference.  Normally I post about fall-in-love-immediately products like lipsticks or chocolate.  This time, I am bringing you my thoughts on a serum I came across and I am so glad I did.

I have seen this serum floating around on the odd YouTube video and Instagram page so naturally, I had to try it.  I have for a long time been used to my skincare range and haven’t dared move away from it.  I am pleased I sucked it up and tried this serum but it seems to have been the missing ingredient that has made everything else work together.  When it goes on, I feel like I can conquer the world.

 

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Firstly, some background on my skin.  I am relatively lucky with my skin however, we are all our own worst enemy so of course i’ll pick up on every little aspect of my face that I would love to change.  Normally I have a nose like Rudolph, small broken veins around it constantly making it red.  I have quite uneven texture on my skin around my jawline, small bumps and my skin would range from normal to dry.  Don’t get me wrong I get the odd demon spot every month, who doesn’t?

This Vitamin C serum has quickly become my holy grail product because the difference that it has made to me is sensational.  My redness, although still there is bearable and I actually am just back from Tesco after leaving with no makeup on.  That. Never. Happens.  I always feel the need to wear makeup, especially in the industry I work in.  This serum is the  only thing I have changed in my regime in the last 2 months so I know that it’s definitely this that is making the change.  It’s actually become a go to for ridiculous things, like I burnt my hand on the oven the other day and I put a little serum on it and it calmed right down.  I’m like the Dad in My Big Fat Greek Wedding and his bloody spray.

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BENEFITS

Plumps and hydrates dry/dull skin

Reduces wrinkles, fine lines and blemishes

Leaves skin soft and fresh

The perfect base for your makeup

Leaves skin looking youthful and glowing

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Main active ingredients are Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid and Collagen.  Each one of these ingredients carry powerful benefits which are designed to help you achieve healthy and natural looking skin – SIGN ME UP, AM I RIGHT?

WHY SKINKISSED?

Cruelty Free and NEVER tested on animals

Oil Free

AAAAND 30 Day Moneyback Guarantee? Eh, hello??

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SKINKISSED VITAMIN C SERUM

Lipstick Lover

Namaste people,

As any of my whole 12 or so followers might know I am partially (completely) addicted to lipstick.  Yes, makeup is my profession and I am around it constantly however, I am genuinely weirdly in love with lipsticks.  It doesn’t matter what type of lippy – matte, satin, cream, matte liquid, frosted, lip stain, gloss – ANYTHING.  Even a damn balm – LOVE.

Sometimes I will legit zone out of conversations thinking about things like ‘oh God, her lipstick is nice… should I ask her what it is? I can’t be rude and not listen to her.  Oh wait, I’m not listening to her.’

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My friends great me with ‘Hey, how are you? My lipstick, before you ask is Mac Creme d’Nude.’  I actually once sat on Face Time to my friend Jenna and made her count my lipsticks with me… I think she liked me a little less after that conversation.  My collection has grown considerably since that video call as it would take hours to go through them all now.  I blame my clients (jk. i love you and you feed my makeup habit.) everytime I book someone in for a Bridal trial I think I suggest a new lipstick that I don’t have yet just so I can go and buy it.  I know, I have a problem.

I stand in work for example and I mean, I work there are so am fairly familiar with every lipstick on my counter.  I still end up swatching the same 20 lipsticks halfway up my arm that I swatched a few days earlier.  I stand and look at them, shake my hand under a light to see how they glisten.  My hand is always so dirty looking – I can’t help it.  At least it’s dirty with pretty colours.

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I don’t know why I love it so much I mean there’s so many articles of makeup that I absolutely love but lipstick always takes the cake.  Lipstick completes every look!  When I’m doing makeups I know it looks good but there’s always something missing and it’s until the lipsticks goes on that it really looks good.  If you scroll through my camera roll on my phone, I wouldn’t be surprised if there are around 500 screenshots of lipsticks that I have seen on Instagram, Pinterest, etc and am waiting to buy.  My lipstick shopping list is more in depth than my actual grocery shopping list.

I’m now away to sit in my little beauty room and rearrange them all into my new beautiful acrylic containers.

I know right, typical female who loves makeup… it’s groundbreaking.  I’m expecting a call any day now about my book release from a publisher.

I once queued outside Debenhams (before I worked there) for a Limited Edition MAC Lipstick…