Tuesday, 28 January 2014

The 2013 Year In Review Tag

Hi guys. Today I am doing the '2013 Year In Review Q&A Tag,' after being tagged by Ruby from 'Oh Ruby.' She has a lovely blog with plenty of great fashion, beauty and fitness posts - so I really recommend that you check her out! 

The rules to this tag are as follows: 

1. In your post, be sure to link back and thank the blogger that previously tagged you
2. Answer the questions below and tag at least 5 other bloggers 
3. Include the badge in your post

So, without any further ado, let's get started!

1. Your top five favourite blogs to read in 2013

2. List your five most read blog posts of 2013
Rimmel's New Colour Rush Lip Crayons
Deaf Havana's 'Old Souls' Album Review
My First Autumn Inspired Makeover
The Next Chapter Of My Life
New Years Eve Beauty Tips

3. Name one blog you wish you had found sooner

One blog that I wish I had found sooner is definitely Sail Boat. I only subscribed to her blog a couple of days ago but she has a lovely variation of posts covering lots of different topics. Plus, I think that her photography is rather lovely.

4. Your favourite blog post of 2013

My favourite post is definitely my Deaf Havana's 'Old Souls' Album Review. Not only is it my most viewed blog post to date but it was even re-tweeted by the band on Twitter, which I got really excited about! Writing the odd music review from time to time is really enjoyable for me, as I think it brings something a little different to blog apart from just posting about beauty products.

5. What would you like to improve (if anything) on your blog this year?
I would love to change the look of my blog as it is quite amateur. I would like to focus on developing the quality of my photos too.

6. Name one blog you have a blog crush on
Again, I love Couture Girl's blog. Not only is she extremely gorgeous but I love the content of her posts and how she is never shy on giving the reader as many details on products as possible!

7. How often do you post?
It depends because sometimes I lack inspiration and I get awful writer's block! However, I try to aim for one or two a week.

8. Share your first post of 2013
I started my blog in March 2013 and my first post was simply a rather dull 'Hello' post, introducing myself to the world of Blogger.

9. Name one thing you'd be doing if you weren't typing this post right now
Probably watching TV or eating!

10. What have you loved the most about blogging this year?
What I have enjoyed the most about blogging so far is that it gives me a creative outlet to talk about all of the things that I am interested in. I have also loved interacting with other girls who share similar interests - they are all so friendly and positive!

The people I would like to tag to do this are: Life Of A Trainee Journalist, Tiffany's Beauty Box, Peach Pow, Gingerbread Smiles and Walking In Claire's Shoes

I really look forward to reading their responses and once again, I would like to thank Ruby for nominating me! 

Monday, 27 January 2014

You Me At Six 'Cavalier Youth' Album Review

British rock band You Me At Six first formed in their hometown of Surrey back in 2004. For four years, the band toured in small venues around the UK before finally hitting the big time and releasing their debut album 'Take Off Your Colours' in 2008 after being signed to Slam Dunk Records. From then on, the band have only gone from strength to strength and have accumulated an extremely loyal fan base in the process. Now, after winning Best Event at last years Kerrang! awards for their 'Final Night Of Sin' show at Wembley Arena (which celebrated the success their third studio album 'Sinners Never Sleep,) the band are back with the highly anticipated release of their new album 'Cavalier Youth.'

At first listen, Cavalier Youth is everything that you would expect from a You Me At Six album. However, the overall sound of the album is a lot more mature than the likes of 'Hold Me Down' and 'Sinners Never Sleep.' The album is filled with tracks that are bound to be sure fire hits including the ever-so-catchy 'Cold Night' and 'Carpe Diem,' which feature infectious choruses and middle eights that would make any fan chant along at the top of their lungs. Two of the heavier tracks on the album, 'Room To Breathe' and 'Love Me Like You Used To,' really showcase lead singer Josh Franceschi's infamous gravelly vocals which have dramatically improved over the course of the bands career. 

Another stand out record on the album is 'Be Who You Are,' which highlights the bands softer side. This particular song, albeit rather brief, has an incredibly romantic feel to it which is a refreshing change from an otherwise hard-hitting rock album. The bands current single 'Fresh Start Fever,' showcases drummer Dan Flint's talent tremendously as the strong beat definitely carries the song from start to finish. This track is a firm favourite amongst fans and has also made BBC Radio 1's 'A List,' which is, without a doubt, extremely well deserved. 

The conclusive track on the album, 'Wild Ones,' starts of very simplistic and focuses purely on Josh's vocals. This song is very comparable to the final songs on Hold Me Down and Sinners Never Sleep, 'Fireworks' and 'When We Were Younger,' which both start off slowly and gradually become faster paced as the track progresses. With one final crescendo, the bands powerful guitar riffs and melodies build the listener up once again to an almighty finish.

The full track listing for the album is as follows:

1. Too Young To Feel This Old
2. Lived A Lie
3. Fresh Start Fever
4. Forgive And Forget
5. Room To Breathe
6. Win Some, Lose Some
7. Cold Night
8. Hope For The Best
9. Love Me Like You Used To
10. Be Who You Are
11. Carpe Diem
12. Wild Ones

Overall, 'Cavalier Youth' is cohesively a brilliant album with twelve engaging and utterly unique tracks. It is clear to see that the Surrey quintet have matured and come on leaps and bounds in recent months. With plenty of tour dates both in the UK and Europe already lined up, 2014 is set to be a great year for one of Britain's best rock bands. You Me At Six are undoubtedly back with a bang!

Friday, 24 January 2014

My Top 5 Fashion & Beauty YouTubers

Hi guys! Today, I thought that I would do something a little different and talk about my top five favourite fashion and beauty bloggers. I really got into YouTube around this time last year after somehow coming across one of Zoella's videos, (I cannot for the life of me remember how that happened,) and ever since then I have been hooked! I have always been a girly-girl who loves make-up and shopping but over the past year or so, my passion for this has really developed. Even though I am just a regular girl with quite a small budget, there is nothing I love more than going into Boots or Superdrug and trying all of the newest products on the market. I am definitely a make-up hoarder! So, without any further ado, here are my favourite YouTubers that I always enjoy watching and who have really influenced me since I have started watching these types of videos. Enjoy!

1. Zoella

First up is the first fashion and beauty based YouTuber that I ever watched, Zoella (Zoe Sugg.) She is by far my favourite YouTuber for several reasons, however, I think that the main reason is because Zoe also suffers with anxiety like me. When I came across her infamous 'Dealing With Panic Attacks & Anxiety' video, I really connected with it as Zoe spoke about a number of topics that all applied to me and my current situation. Not only this, I absolutely love her style! I often look at Zoe's clothes for inspiration as she is petite, like myself, and so I know that her fashion will also suit my small frame. I also love to watch Zoe's vlogs on her second channel, where we get to see more of her day-to-day life. Overall, I think that Zoe is a very inspirational girl and her videos always interest me - especially her HUGE hauls that show which fashion and beauty items she has bought!

2. Tanya Burr

Next up is the gorgeous Tanya Burr (formerly known as Pixi2Woo.) Tanya is renowned on YouTube as being a trained make-up artist who posts a tonnes of excellent tutorials showing her viewers an array of different looks. The main reason that I love watching Tanya's videos is because I have picked up so many beauty tips from her that have completely changed the way I apply my own make-up. As well as this, I love Tanya's whole outlook on life - she is always smiling and is such a bubbly person. I love watching her vlogs because of this reason and in particular I loved watching 'Vlogmas,' where Tanya filmed every day up until Christmas. Plus, I think that her and her fiancé Jim Chapman, who is also a YouTuber, are the most adorable couple ever! 

3. Glam Life Guru
Glam Life Guru, otherwise known as Tati Westbrook, is a YouTuber who I have really grown to love over the past couple of months. I think that the reason behind this is because Tati posts such a great variety of videos AND posts several videos a week. One of my favourite things about her channel is 'Madness Monday,' where she goes to various American drugstores and does huge hauls. She then often reviews all of the new products she has bought in a separate video. The only downside to watching Tati is that because she lives across the pond, sometimes she reviews amazing looking products that I cannot find easily in the UK (which makes me a little sad at times!) 

4. Fleur De Force

Fleur is another one of my favourites because she seems like a really kind, down to earth person which is really refreshing. I find that I get a lot of good product recommendations from Fleur's channel because I am also blonde and fair skinned, so I know that what she uses will also suit myself. Plus, I love her timeless style and clothing - it is very classic and sophisticated. I love watching her main channel videos but not as much as I love watching her vlogs, mainly because I love being nosey and she always seems to have exciting projects that she is a a part of!

5. Essiebutton 

Last but not least is the lovely Essiebutton, who I have only recently subscribed to despite knowing about her channel for ages. I have become instantly hooked to Estée's channel and every time I have some free time or I am bored, I watch her videos. I love Estée because she, again, is a very bubbly and down to earth character. Her reviews of products are really helpful and honest, which often influences me to take a trip to my local Boots and make some naughty purchases (oops!) I really enjoy her Body Shop hauls in particular as I am not really familiar with the brand apart from their body butters, so it is nice to learn about what other nice products are out there.

So, those are my top 5 fashion and beauty gurus on YouTube. I found it very hard to whittle my favourites down to just a mere five, so I would also like to give a quick nod to Sprinkle Of Glitter (Lousie Pentland) and Miss Glamorazzi (Ingrid Nilsen) as both of them just narrowly missed out on spots in my top 5!

Who are your favourite YouTubers to watch? I would love to know, so please leave a comment below - I love recommendations to new channels! I am also thinking about doing another post about my favourite non-beauty related channels, so let me know if that is something that you would like to see in the near future. Thank you :)

Monday, 20 January 2014

Clinique's Superprimer Universal Face Primer Review

Hi guys. Today I thought that I would do a more in-depth review of Clinique's Superprimer Universal Face Primer, which I recently spoke about in my December Favourites post. I was lucky enough to receive this primer as a Christmas present from my parents and I couldn't be more grateful. I had been lusting after this product for a while because I had tried a tester of it a few months previously and fell in love with it instantaneously! 

Clinique released their Superprimer range last year and personally, I think that they are some of the best primers on the market (that I have tried.) Although I received the Universal Face Primer, which is more of a bog-standard primer, the other five products in the range all cater to specific skin problems. The Colour Corrects part of the line includes primers for those with one of the following issues with their skin: redness, dullness, sallowness, discolouration and dullness for those with deeper skin tones. As many of you beauty bloggers will already know, there are different colours that can counteract a vast array of skin problems to give you a nice, neutral base to apply the rest of your make-up on. 

Below is a list of the five tinted Colour Corrects primers and what skin problems they help to conceal:

Redness - a  yellow tinted primer to counteract redness.
Dullness - a pink tinted primer to brighten tired skin.
Dullness in deeper skin tonesa bronze tinted primer to correct dullness in darker skin.
Discolouration - a peach tinted primer to counteract dark spots and circles.
Sallowness - a lavender tinted primer to correct sallow skin.

The main difference between these two types of primers is their textures. The Universal Face Primer has a a liquid-y, smooth texture which mimics that of a moisturiser. On the other hand, the Colour Corrects primers are more like a whipped mousse texture. This reason for these difference is because the universal primer is water based whereas the others in the range are silicone based. However, all six variations of the primer are oil free!

As for this primer prolonging the wear of my make-up throughout the day, it certainly does the trick. I apply this product in the morning and it helps my foundation stay put all day rather than sliding off of my face, despite the fact that this primer is quite hydrating, which is a refreshing change seeing as I have incredibly oily/combination skin!  

I have also tried the discolouration primer after going to my local Clinique counter and asking for a sample so that I can try before I buy. They even put the sample in a really cute Clinique pot rather than giving me a tiny sachet, which I thought was pretty cool! The reason that I wanted to try this discolouration one is because I have seemed to acquire on acne scars and dark spots my cheeks in recent months (how annoying!) The peach-tinted mousse did very well at hiding this problem and I was really impressed, I definitely want to buy this one next!

Overall, the entire Superprimer range is a massive success in my eyes. I think that it is really great how Clinique have a created a range where there really is something for everybody, no matter what your skin type or colour is! I would love to know your thoughts on these primers if any of you have ever tried them before, so please do not hesitate to leave you thoughts and comments below. Thank you :)

Monday, 13 January 2014

My Current Beauty Wish List

Hi guys! Today I thought that I would share with you a couple of items that are currently on my beauty wish list. I have vowed to keep my expenditure of new products to a minimum until I have used up what I already have but the occasional treat can't hurt, eh? I am hoping to get my hands on these products very soon! So, without any further ado, here's what I have been eyeing up so far in 2014!

1. Essie Luxe Effects Nail Polish in Set In Stone - £7.99
First up is this gorgeous polish from Essie. I first mentioned this nail varnish in my November Favourites because my Mum bought me the pink shade, A Cut Above, as a little treat. Now, I am just itching to get another colour from the Luxe Effects collection. Although this product is designed to be used as a top coat on top of another polish, I like to build it up with a couple of coats to achieve an opaque look. The end result is really glitzy and makes me feel glamorous. Plus, it's chip resistant for roughly a week which makes it a winner in my books!  

2. Tangle Teezer in Pink - £10.99
Next up is the infamous Tangle Teezer. The main reason that I want to purchase this particular brush is because 1) I have heard great things about it and 2) my wide tooth comb has seen better days. As I have fine hair, it tends to get knotted very quickly - especially because I curl my hair most of the time. So, I want to purchase a high quality brush that is great at untangling both wet and dry hair. I will definitely be buying this product in the near future!

3. Benefit Erase Paste in Fair - £19.50
This concealer has been on my wishlist for quite a while now. Even though I am young and sleep well, I am prone to dark circles under my eyes and so I always look for concealers that are brightening. Up until now I have been using Rimmel's Wake Me Up Concealer (which is a great and affordable product) but I have heard that this particular Benefit product has a much higher coverage, which is what I need. Plus, who can resist Benefit's adorable packaging? I know I can't!

4. Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balms - £7.99
Last but not least, and the product that I am most excited about buying, are the Revlon ColorBurst Matte Balms. The reason that I haven't purchased this lip product is because they are not available in the UK for another week or so. Anybody that has been reading my posts for a while will know that I am obsessed with the brands Just Bitten Kissable Lip Stains, so I cannot wait to try the matte version of these lip crayons. After reading a very detailed review of this product on Lily Melrose's blog, the colours I am most drawn to trying are Sultry (a muted, pinky nude) and Shamless (a blue-toned deep purple.) Not only are Revlon bringing out ten matte crayons but they are also re-branding the Kissable Lip Stains, (now named ColorBurst Lacquer Balms,) and are bringing out ten new shades of those too. Revlon are on top of their game at the moment and I cannot wait to try them!

So, those are the four products that are currently at the top of my beauty wish list. Which products are you lusting after this month? Please let me know by commenting below :)

Thursday, 9 January 2014

My First Ever Lush Products

Hi guys. This may come as a shock to a lot of you but up until now, I have never tried any Lush products (although I have always wanted to) and I really do not know the reason why! Granted, my nearest Lush store is about a 35-40 minute drive away and I do not often have a reason to travel to this particular shopping centre. However, I was lucky enough to be bought some Lush products as Christmas presents. I received a couple of bits from my best friend Laura and her Mum, which was really sweet, as well as a festive themed gift box from my boyfriend. So, today I thought that I would share with you my favourite products from the bunch. Let's get started!

Creamy Candy Bubble Bar - £2.50 each
This bubble bar is definitely my favourite of the bunch! As you can probably tell from the title, it has a lovely candy floss scent. Usually, I hate overly sweet scents but this one is really subtle. As I am a bit of a Lush beginner, I had to Google how to use a bubble bar and all you have to do is simply crumble a little bit of it under a running tap and it creates bubbles. I love how, unlike bath bombs, you can get multiple uses out of this product - which is great seeing as this one is my favourite! The bar also turned my bath water a baby pink, which was really nice. Not only this, the creamy texture of the bubble bar made me skin really soft and I got a few compliments on how I smelt, which shows how much this gorgeous scent lingers too. This product is definitely a winner! 

Lord Of Misrule Bath Bomb - £3.30 each
Next up is this Christmas-themed bath bomb. Looking at it's green exterior, I presumed that when I dropped this product into the bath the water would, of course, turn green. However, after dissolving for a little while, I noticed that the core of this bomb was a deep red/wine colour which eventually made it look like my bath was full of Ribenna or something! Not only was I amazed by the colour of my bath, the products scent was really lovely. According to Lush's website, this bomb includes vanilla mixed with black pepper and patchouli oil (whatever that is!) In addition, and unsurprisingly, Lord Of Misrule also made my skin feel really silky!

Karma Bubble Bar - £3.25 each
Last but not least is yet another lovely bubble bar, Karma. When I first unpackaged this particular bar, its bright and swirly design drew me in instantly. Doing exactly the same as I did with the Creamy Candy Bubble Bar, I broke off a fraction of the bar and crumbled it under the tap and was extremely pleased with the results. Karma produced a great amount of bubbles (though slightly less than Creamy Candy,) dyed the water a pastel orange/pink and it's fruity scent was heavenly. If any of you have been reading my blog for a while, you will know that my favourite scents are usually fruity and light. The final bonus with this bar, as with every Lush product, was that my skin was left feeling lovely and incredibly nourished.

I hope that you all enjoyed reading about my first ever experience using Lush products. I am definitely hooked on this amazing brand and have already been browsing at what products I want to buy for myself next after I finish up all of the gifts that I received. What are your favourite Lush products? Let me know down below. Thank you :)

Friday, 3 January 2014

My Monthly Favourites - December 2013

Hi guys! As promised in the post I uploaded yesterday, 'My New Years Eve Make-Up,' here are my December Favourites. Granted this post is a few days late now (I cannot believe it is now 2014) but better late than never, eh! Usually, my favourites tend to consist of products that I have been loving for quite a long period of time, as I like to give honest and well-rounded reviews of things that I have tried and tested for at least a month. However, all of this months products have only been in my possession for a week or less. In addition, three of the products I will be mentioning today were given to me as Christmas presents,  which I am incredibly grateful for! With that being said, let's get straight into my five favourite products during the month of December.

Clinique Superprimer Universal Face Primer - £20.00
First up is this lovely primer from Clinique. I have been after this particular primer for a fair few months now after I used a sample of it that I found in a magazine. Up until now, I have only used cheaper high-street primers which I haven't got on with too well (Revlon's Photo Ready Primer in particular.) I have only used this product once so far, on New Years Eve, and I must say that I am impressed already. It provided a smooth base for my foundation, which seemed to stay put all night whilst I was out clubbing. My parents bought me this for Christmas and I am so grateful because it's a product I probably wouldn't have been able to afford or fathom buying otherwise. As it is so special, I am vowing to only use it on special occasions and nights out!

Marc Jacobs Honey Eau de Parfum (50ml) - £39.50
This perfume was another surprise present that was given to me by my Mum and Dad. I am a huge fan of Marc Jacobs fragrances overall, both their smells and packaging are amazing. I was actually given the gift set version which includes a shower gel and body lotion with matching scents to the perfume. The eau de parfum itself is a pretty sweet scent, which I usually steer clear of, but due to it's added fruity elements - it is a lot more wearable. I would agree that it is more of a spring/summer fragrance but it's gorgeous none the less!

Soap & Glory Butter Yourself Five Fruits Super Rich Soothing Body Butter  - £10.50
Next, my lovely aunt and uncle bought me this tub of Soap & Glory body butter. I am a lover of the brand and both me and my Mum use Soap & Glory products religiously. Considering that they are a widely available high-street brand, the quality of their products are amazing. The Righteous Butter has always been my favourite but now I am converted. I tend to prefer fruity and refreshing scents as opposed to cocoa or shea butter scents, though I still love both. This moisturiser is extremely rich and sinks into the skin really quickly, which is an added bonus.

Real Techniques Powder Brush  - £12.99
I have owned the Real Techniques Core Collection, which consists of four brushes; buffing, contour, pointed foundation and detailer brushes, for quite a while now. However, I have been stuck using a brandless powder brush that is pretty useless. The hairs of the brush always used to shed, leaving little black hairs all of my face (how frustrating!) So, with some cash that my Nan gave me for Christmas, I have finally gotten around to buying this brush. As with all Real Techniques brushes, the bristles are really soft and I know that I am going to get a lot of use out of it. I also hope to expand my brush collection in the near future. Next on my list is the Starter Set that features 5 eye brushes.

Maybelline Super Stay 24hr Color in Cherry Pie  - £7.99
Last but not least is this lovely lip colour from Maybelline. I am always on the look out for long-wearing lip products, as there is nothing I hate more than lipstick that barely lasts an hour without fading, transferring onto your teeth or bleeding outside of the lines. I bought this particular product after my friend Sarah recommended it to me, as she has it in a different colour. I bought the shade 'Cherry Pie,' which is a deep red colour which is so pigmented. The lip colour is dual ended, one end being a liquid lipstick and the other being a clear balm. What you have to do is apply the lip colour, wait for it to dry sticky and then apply the balm over the time. I assure you, this product DOES NOT budge! In fact, it is so long-lasting that is actually a nightmare to remove and it requires a lot of scrubbing to do so. That, however, is the only downfall to this amazing product. My only wish is that I purchased a slightly more wearable colour so that I can wear it in the day time too, so I might have to do that some time in the future.

So, that's it for this month! I hope that you enjoyed reading about my December favourites. Please let me know if you have used any of the aforementioned products, I would love to know how you have got on with them. Also, feel free to let me know what products you have been loving over the past month - I love getting recommendations! Thank you :)

Thursday, 2 January 2014

My New Years Eve Make-Up

Hi guys, Happy New Year! This evening, I thought that I would do a quick post showing and listing the products that I used on New Years Eve. Unfortunately, I do not have a good photo of the my finished look but I thought that I would still do the post anyway. I know that I usually write a little description or review about every product that I mention, however, this is just a filler post whilst I prepare my 'December Favourites.' Hopefully, if all goes according to plan, that post will be uploaded tomorrow (fingers crossed!) 

So, here is a full list of the products that I used:

Clinique Superprimer Universal Face Primer
Maybelline Dream Satin Liquid Foundation in Ivory
Rimmel Stay Matte Powder in Translucent
Rimmel Sun Shimmer Bronzer in Light Matte
Rimmel Blusher in Coral Rose (discontinued but still available on Amazon)

Eyes & Eyebrows
Clinique Eyeshadow Duo in Beach Plum (the light shadow only)
Rimmel Exaggerate Eyeliner in Black
Benefit They're Real Mascara in Black
Ardell Professional Demi Wispie Lashes 
Maybelline Master Shape Brow Pencil in Dark Blonde

Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Lip Balm Stain in Crush

Real Techniques Buffing & Contour Brush (part of the Core Collection)
Real Techniques Powder Brush
Mister Mascara Eyelash Curler

Even though this is a very brief post for me, I hope that you all enjoyed snooping at what I wore make-up wise on New Years Eve. As mentioned, my December favourites will hopefully be up tomorrow or the weekend at the latest, so keep your eyes peeled for that! Thank you :)