Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Favourite Blogs #10

Hello again; every month I enjoy discovering new blogs and rediscovering some old favourites. It's a fantastic way to find inspiration and get to know other people. There's something nice about getting to know a person through their likes and dislikes - blogging is a positive way to find out what you like and dislike. At the minute I've been reading a lot of blogs, through twitter and instagram, I like finding out about new blog posts, new bloggers and getting some honest reviews on a variety of things. Bloggers are usually honest, far more relatable than print in a magazine and they also cater for people like me; if I want to know about a make up product for someone with pale skin, I'll look out for a blogger that fits that category. There's definitely a blogger available for anyone, if you look hard enough. I'm loving twitter as way of communicating with other bloggers, and it's an easy way of clicking on blog post that takes your fancy. To have a look at any of the blogs below, just click on the blog URL and it'll direct you straight across!


 
www.icecreamandclara.co.uk

Elizabeth's blog is ultra feminine and undeniably pretty; the soft pastels, natural make up looks and whimsical, pretty photographs of countries such as Italy, it's definitely a dreamy blog. I've been reading this blog for a while now as I love the layout and the romantic theme; there are make up reviews from brands like Benefit and Too Faced, which is lovely as they're quite expensive so it's nice to see honest reviews on them. She's also a fashionista, with many blog posts focussing on outfit choices and what she's listing after from the shops at the moment. There are also some cute little snippets of her young child; he's got a lovely little face and it's crazy seeing how quickly they grow! I also like her book reviews, she's got a classic style in all areas of her life.


 


I actually found Abby through her twitter page; ever since then I've really been loving her blog! Although I've been to Paris myself, her photography and posts just capture a magic about the city that I've never managed to see. Alongside her Paris posts, there are also fashion, beauty and travel based blog posts; my favourite of these are the definitely the travel posts. She has a way of capturing the parts of the world that most of us overlook. I've always wanted to visit Budapest and her post on the city has definitely encouraged me to make a trip sometime as it looks incredible! I'm a sucker for beautiful architecture and you'll love this blog if you also adore architecture, particularly those in Europe.


 


Another blogger that I've discovered from my new love affair with twitter; I fell in love with her blog instantly. The layout is simple and pleasing to the eye that it's just a lovely read. She's a blogger who covers a variety of topics such as beauty, travel, lifestyle and fashion. I admire her honestly, particularly when it comes to mental health topics such as anxiety. She's open with her readers, addressing her life regrets and also posting some honest reviews on a variety of things including films but mostly make up products. I like that she reviews mostly drugstore items as that's more realistic for my budget, so I was excited to read her posts on some MakeUp Revolution items as I do like to know if something is worth it prior to buying. Plus, I really loved her 'Dear Friends', it said so much about how she great she clearly is as a friend! 


 


I originally found Eleanor's blog through her instagram page; I really like how she covers so many different topics such as beauty, fashion, lifestyle and feminism amongst many others. As a sufferer of mental health myself, it was so reassuring to see her share her own mental health story; it's fantastic that blogging has become an outlet for these kinds of issues. It was a great way to remember that you're never alone. Her taste in books is also great, as an avid reader myself I do love a good book review! Anyone who blogs about Harry Potter is always going to be onto a winner with me, as it was basically my whole childhood. Regardless of all of these things, her blog layout is also simple but effective as it's so easy to follow. The blog headings allow you to pick what posts you feel like delving into, which is very helpful.


 

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

A month in instagram #11

Hello again! Looking back over the month of May, I've actually had a pretty good month. I've spent a lot of the month seeing friends, going for walks and just generally enjoying the beautiful architecture of London. Seeing Spring transition into Summer is one of my favourite things; I love the longer days, the brighter, more blue skies and seeing nature bloom. It's such a cliché, but it really is lovely to simply step back and watch the world go around. Over the past year I've spent many hours being unhappy; ultimately I'm learning that you have to create your own happiness. To do so, I've realised that I like going for walks, I enjoy having dinner catch ups with my best friend and basically I look for happiness in the everyday. Happiness (for me) has come from the little things in life; the thins that you often overlook when you're desperate to achieve the 'life goals' that you feel like everyone else has achieved. During May, I've learnt to stop comparing my life to that of others and really focus on myself and what I want from my life. I want happiness, so I've created my happiness. Instagram is a fantastic way to visually remember all of the good times that you've experienced throughout the month; moments that you wouldn't remember otherwise. Here's to an equally lovely June!


 

 


 

Monday, 29 May 2017

Happy Things #22

 


1. The first day of this week is a bank holiday Monday, so naturally I'm super happy about that as it means a day off for me; I'm still getting my head around getting them off now as I never have done before. I've got no plans, but sometimes it's nice to just chill out and recharge your batteries.

2. To start off a good week I've had a cheeky plate of pancakes for brunch, which has completely broken my attempt at a diet but that's ok. Pancakes always make me feel happy and a bank holiday is the best excuse to have a bit of a day off the diet (which isn't going that well anyway).

3. I've got a long week at work this week, but I'm planning to get through it by reading and blogging to empty my mind of any stress that will inevitably come out of me towards the end of the week. 

4. Although I'm not the biggest fan of the hot weather as the heat makes me feel a bit overwhelmed, but I do like the sunnier, longer days that come with summer. During the week I'm going to try and go on several walks down by the river as it really calms me down and empties my mind of any stress. It's so important to take some time out and have some me time every so often.

5. My mental health is definitely doing fairly well at the moment, actually much better than it's been for several years. I think I've finally found some ways to try and combat the bad thoughts with little rituals that really work for me. Taking life a step at a time has really helped and I'm looking forward to enjoying the rest of the year now.


 

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Favourite Instagrammers #11

Hello again! If you're a regular reader of this blog, then you'll know just how much of an instagram fan I am. In all honestly, the app has begun to irritate me a little recently, the follow/unfollow game is giving me a headache. However, I do really like how it's a super visual platform; I've recently started liking Pinterest for the same reasons, but I find instagram easier to use overall. Instagram is one of the apps on my phone that i use more or less every single day as I do love seeing others posts, as well as posting myself. I'm not bothered about if an instagram feed has a theme or not; personally I don't stick to a theme as I use it as a way of documenting my life and promote my blog. I'm really interested in following more bloggers, let me know your usernames in the comments and I'll give you a follow! :)


 

katy_who

I've been in love with Katy's instagram feed for a few months now; there's something addictively beautiful about her ethereal, floral forest photograph collection. Her wild mane of hair really fits the forest, wild theme; her photographs are very influenced by nature and the seasons, for example at the moment she's capturing the blooms of spring. Alongside the nature photographs there are books, architecture, outfits for days and stationary. Her creative flair is obvious throughout the whole feed and although there is an obvious theme it's beautifully done. Her feed is perfect or those who love travel and nature as each photograph fits into that mold. Even with a theme, each image feels personal and there's always a lovely caption that makes you feel as though you're getting to know the person behind the feed.


 

sirenandrose

I've been following Megan on instagram ever since I stumbled across her then blog, thebriarrose a couple of years back. Her feed is mostly food, pastels, Disney and cosplay characters. I really like how each photograph has a story to it, she always writes a detailed caption of how the image makes her feel; it's like you really get to know Megan, her likes and dislikes. Overall she's a girly girl, but I don't feel overwhelmed with pastels and pink. Her photographs of the Cornish coast, of the city of Bath in the full bloom of spring are simply gorgeous. On a side note, she has the loveliest crockery too; all flowers and delicate prints.


 

parlezvousparisien

I found Abby's blog and instagram page very recently, through a twitter blogger chat and instantly fell in love! It's really interesting to see Paris from another Londoners point of view, even though I'm not a fan of Paris. That said, Abby captures Paris in a way that I've never seen; all beautiful architecture, secret cobbled streets and of course, some of the world famous monuments such as the Eiffel Tower and The Cathedrale de Notre Dame. I like the snippets of French culture in the form of food, drink and general lifestyle. I do like to travel, so I enjoy seeing the world through other people's eyes; even the grittier side of the Parisian streets are photographed and shared, it's nice to see all sides of the city, not just the tourist areas.


 

perksofbeingsharna

Sharna's feed is definitely that of a beauty blogger; with her Pinterest worthy interiors, millions of make up products and on trend accessories spread across many of the images. Quirky desk accessories, such as patterned cats, candles and plants are frequently featured in her photographs. I like how she comes across as supe positive, writing captions that describe how much she loves a specific mascara, or hand cream for example. A lot of her photos are pretty in pink, it I feel like they're not doused in pink; although she's a girly girl, you don't feel overwhelmed by the girlyness. She's honest about what make up uses and rates how good it is, which is always useful when you want to buy some make up; reviews from others always persuades me a little bit more!


 

chloerebeccablog

Although Chloe doesn't have millions of followers, she come across as super relatable, especially because she doesn't have a theme. Focussing on lifestyle, fashion and beauty, there are many images of her travels in various cities, in the UK, Hungary and Italy to name a few. She seems super positive and often engages with her followers in the comments. Definitely a summer lover, with lots of photographs of beers in the sun and general enjoyment of the longer days and better weather that we're having in the UK at the moment. I haven't followed her for that long, but I instantly liked her feed as she's keep it real; there's more to enjoy than an instagram theme.


 

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Book Review: Girl On a Train

 


Initially I wanted to read this book out of curiosity; there was a ridiculous amount of hype surrounding it and it seemed to be top of the book charts for months. For a new author, Paula Hawkins reached the writers dream pretty quickly; sadly I found the writing style to be incredibly irritating. The use of three narrators worked well, I actually do like seeing a situation from different perspectives but I wasn't keen on the fact that every narrator was female and completely unreliable. As a reader we're introduced to Rachel, an alcoholic; Megan, a cheat and Anna, a liar. As a woman myself, I found myself hating that each of these women were solely dependant on the male characters, who were portrayed as strong and capable. The male and female dynamics really focussed on the males being the dominant and the females being submissive. Only one female seemed to have her head screwed on, which was Rachel's landlady and friend, Cathy; but even she was reliant on her boyfriend so there was no real strong female lead, which disappointed me from a female author. I feel like I was expecting more from the book, given all of the hype surrounding it. 

All of the characters were majorly unlikeable; probably the most bearable was Rachel as although her reasoning was a little off, she did at least try to do the right things, even if she went about it in the wrong way. However, I feel like her narrative was fairly unbelieveable; yes, I understand that using an unreliable narrator is a fantastic literary technique (when used correctly) but with Rachel it was a bit strange that at the start of the novel she apparently couldn't remember anything when she had been drinking to suddenly towards the end of the novel she could remember everything. Actually, Rachel's drinking is the key to most of the novel; whenever she drinks she's a different person. She's definitely braver when drunk, but ultimately her mental health isn't the best due to her alcoholism. For much of the novel I was frustrated due to her lack of realisation for what drinking cost her; a husband, a job. Alcohol makes her a liar too, pretending to her landlady that she goes to work everyday by getting the same two trains in and out of London that she did when she had a job and a routine.

From the train window she watches her ex-husband with his new wife and family, as well as a couple whose lives she imagines inside her head in their houses. On the surface, Rachel has massive mental health issues, spurred on from her drinking. When you realise that the house she watches was once he own home, you can understand why she feels so pained but strangely obsessed with peering in. She's clearly still grieving for her old life. There are several twists and turns in this novel, but overall it's very slow to gather any momentum. I was actually relieved when the novel started to fully shape, although it was fairly predictable throughout. It was fairly interesting to view the novel from Megan's perspective due to her involvement within the murder; a serial adulteress with no inhibitions about lying and cheating to her own husband so she's equally as unreliable as Rachel is to the reader. Even worse, Megan lives a few doors down from Anna, the third narrator. Married to Rachel's ex-husband, she is also a liar and a cheat as she made her way from mistress to wife and mother. Most of the novel focusses on the feud between Rachel and Anna over their shared love of Tom.

The three person narrative was carried out smoothly and worked well, but the three characters were so similar at times that they almost morphed into the same person, making it difficult to distinguish between them. At times the phrases and descriptions of the same event were almost identical; I found the characters irritating, making the book difficult to read. I feel like Hawkins used the idea of the broken woman to keep interest open in the novel; I enjoyed it more towards the end of the book, once it had picked up the pace a little and I was actually surprised in the end. I thought it was predictable but I was very wrong in terms of who actually committed the murder; early on, I assumed I knew the whole story straightaway and I was pleasantly surprised to have been wrong. If you plan to read this book, try and read it with an open mind, rather than following a 'whodunnit' set of theories. My main issue with the book is how women and men are represented, they're shallow and lacking any real substance. Likewise, alcoholism is a genuine issue mentioned regularly throughout the book, but it's also skimmed over in a sense; Rachel just suddenly ceases drinking, which in reality, seems completely unbelievable for someone so reliant on it. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it, but I didn't love it. It didn't live up to the hype or my expectations, which was a shame.


 

Monday, 22 May 2017

Happy Things #21

 


1. So I've made plans to see my best friend at the weekend, which is always a pleasure. It's lovely to have that person who you can rely on and can effortlessly cheer you up.

2. My reading list is literally growing every single day; it's keeping me busy and is a fantastic way of keeping my mind in a positive place. I'm learning that the more I use distractions, such as reading, my mind feels much more at ease with life. It's a good feeling.

3. This is a very strange contribution to this list of positivity, but I'm actually really happy with how my eyebrows are looking at the moment. After years of overplucking I think I've finally found the perfect medium between too thin and too bushy, which is exciting.

4. I've got a lot of blog posts planned and I'm excited to see them posted over the next week; blogging is such a good hobby and it's really changed my life over the past year. I'm getting more involved with the blogging community and I'm enjoying it so much.

5. The weather seems to indicate that summer is definitely on its way; the blue skies, the sun... I'm enjoying the nicer weather as my mood definitely improves when the weather is lovely.


 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Beauty Confessions Tag

 


Hello again! I found out about this tag from lifewithb and actually I've completed another tag through reading her blog, which is awesome by the way! I love getting inspiration from other bloggers to post on my own blog. I think most people have a bit of a beauty addiction and I'm certainly no exception to that; this tag was super fun to do and very easy because there's so much to talk about. If you're interested in beauty, keep on reading!


1. What is your biggest beauty product addiction? (Lippies, blushes, highlighter, bronzer, mascara, etc.)

I'm in love with pretty eyeshadow palettes at the moment, but honestly I think it's lipsticks as I own so many lip products. I have so many liquid lipsticks and lipsticks but literally when I swatched my lipstick collection for a post I realised how many lipsticks I actually have, as well as how many of them are red, haha! I am trying to buy more of a range of products and shades now.

2. How many products do you have from your addiction?

I actually have so many lipsticks... In total there's probably at least 15, which doesn't sound like much but without realising I always seem to end up having more lipsticks suddenly appear! Aside from lipsticks and considering my whole make up collection I definitely own too much stuff. I have a stacking make up box and five make up bags as well as pots full of brushes. The addiction is real!

3. What is one type of beauty product you hate? (highlighters, hairspray, etc.)

I'm not a fan of hairspray, although that's likely from years of overuse from when I was a dancer. I'm also not a lover of cream products, like cream blusher or highlighter because they feel super sticky on my skin; another thing I hate is too dark foundations... Even most ivory shades are too dark for me, which is a nightmare.

 4. What has been your biggest challenge in beauty? (ex: a technique you learned or leaving a beauty comfort zone)

It has to be the perfect cat eye flick! One eye is always perfect and then the other just won't ever match. It irritates me every single time. Aside from that, I have my boyfriend to thank for encouraging me to understand that less is more. I know that sounds a bit pathetic but I used to wear a complete full face all day, every day and my skin was so bad. Now I let my skin breathe much more often, but at the same time it's hard to be fine with wearing only a bit of concealer and mascara for everyday. It sounds so self centred but it was so difficult for me to learn to love my natural face!

5. What is one beauty comfort zone you don’t ever think you’ll leave?

In all honesty the one product I need in my life is mascara, I really love the ways it opens up my eyes and helps me to look more awake. Another thing I love is a classic red lip, I always feel so sophisticated and 10 times prettier when I've got a red lipstick on for a night out.

6. What is one beauty thing you suck at? (ex: eyeliner like cat eye or taking your makeup off at the end of the day, etc.)

I mentioned in another of these answers that I'm awful at the cat eye look; one eye is always good and the other awful. I'm also not great at contouring; I'm always trying to improve my technique and I've watched countless YouTube videos on how to contour like a boss but I always end up looking like I've got three different shades in straight lines across my face... Even blending doesn't work wonders for me.

7. What is one thing in beauty that you don’t understand its hype? (Technique, trend, etc.)

There are so many weird trends and techniques around at the moment, like using a tampon and other crazy stuff as a beauty blender... I'm always freaked out by textured nails too, like velvet or fur and stuff. I have no idea why but I just hate it!

I have no one in mind to tag to complete this 'tag', but if another blogger is reading this, I'd recommend this tag as not only is it fun to complete it's another post idea which is always great! :)


 

Saturday, 20 May 2017

Book Review: Big Little Lies

 


Hello again! Today's post is another book review; I really enjoy sharing the books I read with you all. I decided to read Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty after a workmate recommend it. I had super high hopes for it, but I'll admit that for the first few chapters I wasn't keen. The narrative style is a very modern writing technique; using internet 'chat' style statements at the end of each chapter to create speculation about the bigger picture. Once I got further into the story I quickly became addicted. The three main characters (Jane: a young single mother, Madeline: passionate, girly and begrudging, Celeste: showstoppingly beautiful) although seemingly quite extreme, are definitely relatable and work well as a trio. All of the characters that are introduced throughout the book are known to each other through their children being at the same school; on the surface this book comes across as being yet another kindergarten group of cliques who all believe their child is the most amazing, fantastically talented five year old to ever attend school.

However, through the snippets of information provided in each chapter and the statements suggesting that something big will be revealed at the school fundraising night it's almost impossible not to become curious; this book becomes fascinating very quickly. It deals with many taboo topics, such as domestic abuse, bullying, rape amongst several others. There are many hints that all is not what it seems; it really pushes the idea that parents can be badly behaved and that can easily affect children. I found myself becoming increasingly frustrated by the snippets of information as they kept pointing to some kind of crime being committed, with no suggestion of who but a clear indication of when. With an obvious link to the title, the whole book focuses on the 'little lies' that we as people often tell others without thinking of the consequences; leading up to the big event at the end of the book there are all kinds of lies and exaggerations being spread by main and minor characters. I found book incredibly gripping the further I read; there was so many unexpected twists, I never knew what was going to happen next... Even my best guesses were completely wrong!

It was a little confusing at time because there was such a vast array of characters being introduced at different points; I really liked the writing style once I got into the action and focussed on what was going on. The whole book was littered with clues, but because as a reader you saw so many different perspectives and ideas it was so hard to keep up with the clues and piece them together. Moriarty has a way of making all of the characters connect in ways that they don't even realise whilst on the surface being polar opposites; once the characters were established this was an excellent way of piecing the clues together. By using the present to relay the lead up of events to the fundraiser night alongside statements from witnesses of a murder from the same event from the past really messes with you when you're reading. This book really highlighted how you can never really know what is going on in someone's else life, no matter how close you think you are to them. For a crime novel, it was very light in places and very dark in others; I was gripped after several chapters, once I the key players were fully established.

Overall, I found once the plot started to shape itself, the amount of suspense was unfathomable; the ending was hugely unexpected and satisfying. I started the book not impressed at all, but I'm glad that I persevered as I ended up loving it. I wasn't a fan of the witness statements; yes they were useful for keeping up to date with the plot but the layout was confusing. As a reader you need to keep on track with all of the characters but it wasn't easy as there were so many players and perspectives provided throughout; it's only when the main characters are set in that the plot begins to make sense. Moriarty seamlessly weaves many important topics into this novel, using a variety of perspectives to do so. What I particularly liked about the way that Moriarty presented the murder was that the identity of both the murderer and the murdered were left to guesswork until the very end, with no disappointment at all. I would recommend reading this as although it's a slow start, once the action begins it's impossible not to engage with its enticing mystery, yet humourous (at times) aspects of storytelling. It's a fascinating read and wholly realistic; the majority of the characters will remind you of someone you've met at sometime in your life and that's what makes this book such a pleasure.


 

Tuesday, 16 May 2017

May Playlist!

 


I love popping my iPod onto shuffle and going for a walk, or listening to music when I'm on public transport. I'm aware that my iPod is super old and unfortunately will one day not work anymore, but until that time I'm loving the nostalgic value of using a device does purely what it sets out to. It saves my phone battery and doesn't need much tlc to keep it going. Plus, the bright red of this generation was always my favourite. My inner child is very happy with it. 


1. Stay - Zedd & Alessia Cara
2. No More Sad Songs - Little Mix
3. Move Your Body - Sia 
4. First Time - Kygo & Ellie Goulding
5. Hard Times - Paramore
6. Castle on the Hill - Ed Sheeran 
7. Otherside - Red Hot Chili Peppers
8. Plug In Baby - Muse
9. Burn - Ellie Goulding
10. Touch - Little Mix
11. City of Angels - 30 Seconds to Mars
12. Scars to Your Beautiful - Alessia Cara
13. The Zephyr Song - Red Hot Chili Peppers
14. I'm Just a Kid - Simple Plan
15. U + Ur Hand - P!nk


 

Monday, 15 May 2017

Happy Things #20

 


1. So, as of today I'm starting with a #MondayMotivation feel; I've started a diet... Which is a massive step for me, as I've avoided dieting for a long time. It's nothing drastic, but I'm trying to eat more healthily and not fill my body with crap food all the time. I'm planning to eat more fruit and vegetables as a positive change to my dietary habits.

2. I'm planning to finish my current read this week, so that I can post another book review and attempt to make my way through my absolutely massive book list (I swear it grows longer every week).

3. My gym membership seems to be taking its life to go through, so whilst I wait I have decided take Scarlett for more walks as that's a super simple and easy way to fit in some excerise and keep my dog happy too. Although she hates the rain, so hopefully the weather will improve soonish!

4. I've got some time off to look forward to in the summer which is lovely; I cannot explain how nice it is to have a job that pays you when you want or need a holiday! Even if it's just chilling out at home, I'm so excited to have some time off in the coming months.

5. I have so many more blog posts planned out and ready to write this week, fingers crossed they'll be ready for publishing later on in the week. I'm really enjoying blogging at the moment, it's definitely the best hobby that I could've started. I'm loving getting to know other bloggers too!

 

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Favourite YouTubers #5

Hello again; I love watching YouTube videos before I go to sleep when I'm tucked up in bed. I really admire the confidence it must take to literally put yourself out there, as YouTube seems to really attract hate of all kinds. I picked the YouTubers below based on how much I've been watching them recently, I'm not fussed by subscriber amounts as that doesn't necessarily result in good content. I would never be a YouTubers myself, but I love the tips and tricks that I've picked up since watching YouTube more. For me, I love the make up tutorials available as they help me learn how to apply make up but also is a good way to find new bits and pieces that I like, especially if a YouTube has ghostly skin like I do. I would love to follow some lesser known YouTubers, so feel free to recommend some in the comments!


 

Just Jodes

I started watching Jodie fairly recently and I warmed to her really quickly; she comes across as super down to earth and genuine. One of the reasons why I subscribed to her was that she regularly thanks her followers and always seems so inclusive in her videos, almost like a friend. Her make up tutorials are fairly easy to follow and she uses a range of make up that suits different budgets which is also nice because as a viewer you can choose which brands you can afford and then watch those specific videos. Her videos are super chatty and chilled out, plus her collaborations with other YouTubers are always interesting to watch as she often introduces you to smaller YouTubers, encouraging them to be more active in the online community. I like her favourites videos as they often feature products from all budgets and they don't feel like a brag.


 

Ebony Day

I found her channel not long ago, but I liked the mix of music and lifestyle videos available. Her voice is simply stunning, but I like her music videos because they're mostly acoustics, filmed in her house; I feel like that shows her raw talent, especially as she plays the instruments herself. I've found her voice to be both powerful and soft, it's almost ethereal in its tone. Aside from the music videos, I like her collaborations with other YouTubers and the glimpses into her and her fiancés life; you witness them getting engaged, baking together and just generally spending time together. Ebony also talks about some serious topics, like her health problem and how she deals with it on an everyday basis. Also, she has a really unusual but amazing accent! I really like how she speaks, weird as that sounds, haha.


 

Meg Says

I've been watching Meg for quite a while and follow her on a couple of other platforms too. I like how she often mentions how she gets inspiration from other YouTubers; it makes her seem more relatable, as well as honest. Her favourites videos are always interesting to watch as she has lovely taste and suits a range of budgets in her choices. As she's very pale skinned like me, I really like her testing different make up videos as I can usually guarantee that if something suits her, it will likely suit me too (which is useful as it meant I don't waste too much money). Her make up tutorials are super easy to follow and the make up products used are generally pretty affordable for anyone.


 

Eve Bennett

She's quite a new subscribe for me, and I have to admit that not all of her videos appeal to me, probably because she's doing her A-Levels and so the study guide aren't really relevant for me (although I wish something similar had existed for me when I was younger). One of the reasons I do like her is that she's acad,epically ambitious, which is nice to see in someone as young as her. She posts a lot of haul and make up videos using a range of price points; both high end and drugstore or high street. Eve seems fairly grounded, as she often shows her family in her videos and is quite vocal about how some YouTubers behave at events or in private. Her make up tutorials are quite easy to follow and her recommended app video was great as I'm always looking for more useful apps.


 

Jade Billington

I subscribed to Jade after watching her in some collaboration videos with some of the other YouTubers that I subscribe to. She doesn't have millions of subs, but her videos are great quality; there are some high street hauls from places like Primark, Topshop and Boots as well as some classics like 'what's in my bag?'; I like how she's honest about her anxiety, talking about how finding a wedding dress was a nightmare experience. It's good to see comparisons of high end make up to drugstore and whether or not they are worth the money. Jade comes across as really sweet and uploads fairly regularly too, which is fab.

 

Saturday, 13 May 2017

A Mini Haul #8

Hello again; if you're a regular reader then you'll definitely know that I'm one of those people that's generally always on a budget. It's not that I don't like or want high end products, but I do feel like it's more than possible to manage similar (if not the same) looks which similar products that are far more purse friendly. This month I've been a bit naughty and had a bit of a splurge. I've been in need of a new foundation for a few months, but I'd been putting it off a lot until I found one that had good reviews and matched my extremely pale skin tone. If I'm honest, the two foundations I bought were definitely 'YouTube made me buy it' purchases based on some videos that I watched from sophdoesnails and sophielouisebeauty. The foundations I bought were the L'Oreal Paris Infallible 24hr Foundation in the shade Porcelain which was a fantastic buy as although it's not the cheapest foundation at £10.99 but the shade is perfectly ghostly and gives good coverage (medium, but close to full with more product used) without looking cakey so it ticked all of my needed boxes. The second foundation is the L'Oreal Paris Infallible Total Cover Foundation also in the shade Porcelain. It was slightly cheaper than the first foundation, with this one priced at £9.99. However this one is definitely better value for the long term; it's incredibly high coverage even with a small amount used and it's still very pale so I feel like this one will last me longer as it's the one I'll use for nights out or bad skin days.


 


I've been in love with the Maybelline Baby Pore Eraser Skin Primer for a few years now; whenever I use it the make up doesn't budge an inch from my face, plus my skin feels soft and dewy before the make up is applied. For £7.99 it's really good value as you don't need to use much; I've used higher end primers that have similar effects to this one, so this one is good for the purse strings as well as the face. It's lasts me quite a while as I don't wear primer every day, only when I'm going out and I want to look fresh all evening! Another repurchase for me was the Maybelline Matte Maker Mattifying Powder in the shade Classic Ivory; I've been using this powder non stop for over two years now, as it's pale enough for me and sets my base really nicely. For £3.99 it's definitely a must in a make up bag as it's affordable to buy and replace whenever necessary which is why I love it so much. I've tried so many powders and this one is the one that I always go back to. The last item in this photograph is a mascara, the L'Oreal Paris Volume Million Lash Mascara Feline Black which priced at £10.99 is pretty expensive in my opinion. I do usually think that mascaras are good regardless of price, but this one is actually pretty good. It had good reviews, but I've found that the rounded brush picks up all of my lashes and makes them super long and very dark, which is the kind of mascara that I really like. 


 


So as I decided to treat myself, I bought some make up brushes that I've been listing after for absolutely ages. I've loved the Real Techniques line ever since I started getting more make up skills in the past few years, so I've finally indulged in the Starter Kit of eye brushes. The main reason that I bought these for the bargain price of £19.99; for the price you get five brushes that are really good quality and I'm hoping that I can produce some lovely looks with these in the future. I've also been thinking of buying more of the NYX liquid lipsticks, so I bought two, the Liquid Suede version in the shade Sandstorm and the Lingerie line in the shade Baby Doll. Both of these lipsticks are slightly bold choices for me, a muddy brown and a pale peach. They're definitely the kind of lipsticks that look better with a full face of make up I think, so I'm planning to try out some looks with them sometime soon. I made a brave decision and bought the Maybelline Brow Precise Micro Pencil in the shade Soft Brown. Although my hair is blonde, my eyebrows have always been fairly dark, so the light brown/ash blonde shade of this eyebrow pencil is the perfect shade for me. I'm actually in love with this product, it's the perfect tool for thick but natural looking brows and I'll be using this everyday. For £7.99, it's definitely in competition with some of the more expensive brow products available but I do recommend using a brow gel to set the brows in place afterward. Finally, I've been loving my Vera Wang Princess of Hearts and Britney Spears Maui Fantasy perfumes that I was lucky enough to receive for my birthday. This is definitely a big enough haul for a while and I'm more than happy with my purchases. Have I bought anything that any of you like or would like? Let me know in the comments!


 

Friday, 12 May 2017

MOTD - Natural and Glowy

 


This make up look is one that I wore to spend the weekend with boyfriend; as I get older I'm slowly starting to be ok with how I look sans make up, but if I'm going out I do prefer to wear make up as I will admit that it boosts my confidence a little. At the minute I'm loving glowy skin with nude lips and a strong brow. Considering I wear make up roughly once a week, I own so many different make up products it's a joke! Starting with my base, firstly I prime my skin using the Baby Skin Pore Eraser by Maybelline to create smooth, silky skin that will let make up stay on all day. I also use the Hide The Blemish by Rimmel concealer crayon in the shade ivory to cover under my eyes only. Next, I use the Lasting Finish Foundation by Rimmel in the shade ivory and literally cover all of my face with it; this foundation has fantastic coverage but it's slightly too dark for me before powder. That said, it feels smooth and light on the skin even with it being full coverage. I then use a second concealer, the Eraser Eye Age Rewind by Maybelline in the shade Light and spread in the triangular shapes under my eyes as well blend into the blemishes around my nose and my eyelids. The final step in creating my base is to use the Matte Maker Mattifying Powder in the shade ivory which is the perfect shade for my pale skin. I bake the concealer in before brushing all over my skin to create a flawless finish.

At the moment I've been practising how to contour; to do this I've been using the Kate Moss Sculpting Palette by a Rimmel in the shade #002 Peach Glow. I start by using the bronzer, brushing it into my cheek bones before using the blush from the palette, lightly dusting it into the apples of my cheeks. From there, I use the Makeup Brow Kit by Sleek in the shade light and shape my brows using the powder from the palette and setting my brows using the wax. I then like to colour my eyelids with eyeshadow using the Rose 2 Colour Riche Eyeshadow Palette by L'Oreal. For this look used three different shades; a matte pink all over the lid and in my crease, a shimmery rose shade in my inner corners and start of my eyes before finishing with a shimmery purple across the outer corners of my eyes. This shimmery eye look is one that I would save for special occasions, but I have to be honest and say I wish I hadn't used the purple as it didn't blend particularly well.

With practice, I'm slowly learning how to use highlighter in a more natural way, rather than simply layering and caking it on. I used the Vivd Baked Highlighter by MakeUp Revolution in the shade Ever Glow Lights and gently brushed it across the top of my blush, on my brow bone and across my Cupid's bow. (Putting highlighter on my nose doesn't look nice so I leave it to the cheekbones). After applying highlighter across my face I then use The Volum' Rocket Express by Maybelline mascara on my top and bottom lashes in the shade Very Black; I like to have very curled, separated lashes and the dark shades makes my eyes look wide without the need of eyeliner. Lastly, I used the Soft Matte Lip Cream by NYX in the shade London on my lips; I'm in absolute love with this lipstick, the shade is nude but classic which fits this overall look. When I wear make up I'm starting to really like the less is more approach but at the same time, I do love make up. What looks are you guys loving? Let me know in the comments! :)

 

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Book Review: The Muse

 


I seem to be growing a longer book list by the day at the moment, so it was a genuine struggle to decide what to read. I was recommended to read The Muse by Jessie Burton by my mother, who is a Librarian. Some of my favourite ever books have been based on her recommendations so I trust her opinion, but unfortunately I have to admit that the synopsis on the rear of the book wasn't very enticing; after reading the novel I can honestly say that it doesn't do any justice to Burton's imaginative and vivid, poetically rhythmic writing at all. The novel pulled me in incredibly quickly, due to the beautiful writing style. Split between 1960s England and 1930s Spain, using a dual time frame can be a difficult thing to master, but Burton seems to project this style of writing with ease. The main character from 1960s London was incredibly likeable, with her lovely prose and endearing character. As a reader you really got a feel for the racial discrimination that was around at the time, it was nice to see it from a young professional Trinidadian immigrant female, rather than the stereotypical (white) British male. Odelle is a very intelligent character, it's enjoyable to see her manage to break down the class and race barriers that unfortunately existed at that time through her work as a typist for an art gallery. Her intellect also captures her boss, Quick who becomes rapidly fond of her and pushes her to follow her creative strengths.

The characters in the Spanish era were not so easily loveable, the main character Olive came across as a strong willed young girl but also unaware of her own privilege; being indifferent to an offer to study at a prestigious London Art School, instead desperately in love with a Spanish ruffian. She determinedly forces her friends to take credit for her work and deliberately spites her father as she believes he undervalues her as a female artist. Instead of seeing her creativity as her talent, she believes that being in love is the source of her creative achievements. Olive and her family present an interesting set of topics regarding the perception of women in both the creative arts and the world, alongside more niche questions such as why artists create and how inspiration feeds itself upon the artist. 1930s Spain is also on the brink of civil war, which from a readers perspective was an interesting take; there was a slight glorification of war seen through the characters eyes, they never seem to understand the extent of the danger until it is too late. Most of the action is provided in the chapters based in Spain; they're fairly complex and often confusing. Olive's friendships are definitely questionable, as are her relationships with her parents. 

Back in 1960s London, Odelle meets Lawrie at her friends wedding party; having recently inherited a painting after the death of his mother, he takes it to be valued by the Skelton Art Gallery, where Odelle works. Although there is much interest surrounding the painting, Quick is notably flustered and unlike herself upon seeing it. The painting is the key to the dual time frame; it's quite slow going to find out the true connection, but I found that there was more than enough action provided in each storyline to keep the interest in the overall plot well and truly alive. Teresa, a young but sensible person pulls Olive's talent for painting to the forefront of the village, which is mirrored by Quick pushing Odelle to be a published writer; using her influence to get the work published in a magazine. The dual time frame works incredibly well in this novel, because Burton connects the two well, using clues throughout, constantly keeping the reader wondering what the connection truly is and often providing red herrings which result in you being massively misled. All of the characters in both time frames have flaws, acknowledged in various ways. As a reader, the distinguished flaws ensure that the characters are seen as human even if unlikable.

Overall, this novel is one that can only be described as unfathomably well written. The romances found in both the 1930s and the 1960s came across as believable as well as strategic; the plots throughout the novel are not easy to understand and well established to keep the reader guessing by describing some rather catastrophic chains of events in both time frames. The dual time frame really worked for me, I thoroughly enjoyed the journeying back and forth through time and the small snippets of information feeding through at the novel went on. The novel definitely has a strange magnetic charm to it; a tale of love, loss, betrayal and art running through it. The characters are not the most memorable but it is a novel that ties up the loose ends nicely, without a big fuss. Using Odelle as the main narrative writer was very clever, because as a writer herself, a lot of the novel gained momentum through her and her inquisitive nature. This book is a definite recommend for me, as I found it to be both an enjoyable and interesting read, the historical touches were displayed in a creative way that kept me interested, plus the gorgeously written prose is a bonus, as is the beautiful cover art.


 

Monday, 8 May 2017

Happy Things #19

 


1. So I had a nice (unexpected) weekend spent with my boyfriend and his family; it's always enjoyable to do things outside of the ordinary and be a bit sociable. It put me in a good mood for the start of the this week.

2. I've got this weekend off so it's likely I'll be seeing my best friend so that's always a catch up to look forward to. Plus, we always eat good food and get to know how each other's lives are getting along.

3. I finished a book today, which is always a good thing as it means I have a new blog post to write and I get to decide what I want to read next, which is something that I'm really enjoying, sad as that is.

4. The new bed and mattress is super comfortable and so spacious, I absolutely love it! It feels like I'm the princess and the pea; I definitely recommend investing in a new bed as it's the best decision I've made in a while.

5. I'm desperately praying that the weather improves during this week, I'm still wearing my winter parka, which seems completely mad as it's May already, I'm dreaming of a nice summer but we'll see soon enough I suppose.


 

Sunday, 7 May 2017

TMI Tag

 


Hello again! I found this tag through the lovely Beth from LifeWithB as she also posted this on her blog; I'm not a confident enough person for making YouTube videos, blogging is much more within my comfort zone as I love writing and photography. I do quite enjoy doing tag posts as they're basically a form of Q&A without the stress of asking for questions on social media (and not getting any as I'm such a small blogger) and I do like being open with whoever does bother to read my posts - if you do, I appreciate it so much as I often feel like I'm typing to myself, eek! Enough of rambling, here's the tag!



What are you wearing?
I've literally come home from work and changed into comfy clothes, so I'm wearing a Gryffindor t-shirt from Primark, a pair of checked berry red pajama trousers also from Primark and my slipper which were a gift from my trip to Poland from my mother in law.


Ever been in love?
Yes, I have. I'm such a hopeless romantic that for a long time I misunderstood the concept of love, whereas now I'm really at peace with not only myself, but to the point where I'm able to love and be loved. #cringe haha!


Ever had a terrible breakup?
Yes, I've experienced an extremely traumatic break up, it's something that I'm not fully happy about addressing if I'm completely honest, even though I'm much, much happier without that person in my life.

How tall are you?
I'm super short, literally just 5ft tall!

How much do you weigh?
I've been told that I weigh far too much for my tiny height, in fact my GP is certain that I have super heavy bones as my height, weight and dress size don't correspond. I'll admit that I'd like to be thinner, but it doesn't control my thoughts like it did when I was teenager.

Any tattoos?
Yes, I have a dog paw on my right forearm with a red heart in the centre. It's my only one, but I'm debating whether or not to get another.

Any piercings?

I have a lot of piercings! 3 lobe piercings, a rook, tragus and an auricle piercing on my right ear; 4 lobe piercings and a conch on my left, my left nipple pierced and my belly button. I would say piercings are very addictive.

OTP?
I actually had to google this as I had no clue what it meant... Apparently it means 'One True Pairing', which to be honest still doesn't make sense to me, but I'm going to say my boyfriend as he's very close to perfect for me. 

Favorite Show?
I actually don't watch television that much (not like I used to) but my absolute favourite show growing up was Buffy The Vampire Slayer, which is pretty fitting as it's having a moment right now as it's been 20 years! That said, another classic for me is Friends so I'm definitely a proper 90s child, oops.

Favorite bands?

There are actually so many, I'm a big fan of Foo Fighters, Panic! At The Disco, Placebo and White Lies just to name a few. That said, I listen to so many different kinds of music that it's actually hard to put my iPod on shuffle as I never know what I'll end up listening to... It could be Slipknot, Katherine Jenkins, One Direction or Britney to give you a taste of how random it really is.

Something you miss?
I really miss Poland; it's not a country I would ever have dreamt that I'd visit if I hadn't have met my boyfriend, but I've really fallen in love with his city and spending time with him and his family.

Favorite song?
At the minute my favourite song is most likely Hard Times by Paramore, it's actually such a tune... It's stuck in my mind all day long!


How old are you? 
I actually turned 24 literally about a week ago!

Zodiac sign? 
I'm a Taurus, which I feel fits my personality fairly well.

Favorite Quote? 
It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live - Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone. It's definitely a quote that encourages me to stay positive and enjoy the moment.

Favourite Actor?
I like a lot of actors, but one who comes to mind is Jennifer Aniston as I've enjoyed anything I've seen her in that I can think of.

Favourite Colour?
Green, but when I was a young child it was always Purple.

Loud music or soft?
Mostly loud, but it does depend on my mood.

Where do you go when you’re sad?
I like to nest under my duvet until I feel ready to face the world.

How long does it take you to shower?
Surprisingly not that long. If it's just to be clean, around 10 mins. If I want to relax and take my time and condition my hair and use a fancy body scrub then probably 25 mins.

How long does it take you to get ready in the morning? 
Around 30-40 mins if I'm not putting make up on. If I'm wearing make up it'll be another 40 mins on top of that, which is why I don't bother wearing make up to work.


Ever been in a physical fight?
Yes, I was actually quite a horrible child in school. I could be bad as often as I was good, which I'm not proud of.

The reason I joined Blogger?
I originally joined Blogger back when I was at university as I thought blogging was so easy, how wrong I was! I posted a few times and then I ended up doing uni work instead. Roughly a year ago I decided to start up blogging again as I'd been through a bad break up and wanted a distraction. As I studied a Fine Art at university and I wanted to find a creative outlet, I've not looked back since.

Fears? 
I'm absolutely terrified of flying, which kind of makes sense as I hate heights too.

Last thing that made you cry?
I had a nightmare a day or so ago and it felt so real that I honestly had a massive cry. Mental health issues can be super hard.

Last time you said you loved someone?
I say it to Piotr at least once a day. Today I said it as I left to go to work.

Meaning behind your youtube/ blogger name? 
Actually it took me ages to decide. When I first started blogging, I was interested in fashion, so I was called 'artaccessoriesattire', but a year ago when I overhauled my blog I wanted something that was more general and less of a mouthful. Blogging full time is a dream job for me, which is where the dream comes from. I'm blonde, and an online thesaurus suggested pearl as an alternative word so that became pearly as pearldream or pearldreams were taken already, so it resulted in apearlydream which is fairly generalised and easy to use as a social media name.

Last book you read?
A Year of Marvellous Ways by Sarah Winman, I can't rave about it enough. Absolutely fantastic read.

The book you’re currently reading?
The Muse by Jessie Burton. Also a beautiful read, it's so addictive.

Last show you watched?

When writing this, I was in the living room with my nana and mum; nana likes quite niche tv shows, so we watching something to do with life in Alaska. I was more typing than watching, but it's an interesting take compared some of the other reality shows.

Last person you talked to? 
A hungover boyfriend, he's definitely not feeling his best haha. He did manage to laugh at me, so he'll survive this pain.

The relationship between you and the person you last texted?
My mama, I told her we'd go to the other side of London ok. The journey was super annoying.

Favorite food?
Definitely fish and chips. If I don't have any chips for a few days I'm genuinely missing eating them, it's not a surprise that I'm not skinny hahaa.

Place you want to visit?
To be honest, there's so many places in Europe that I'd like to visit, but I'd also like to see a lot more the UK too. For example, Amsterdam, Prague and Budapest in Europe, in the UK I'd love to visit Edinburgh, Cardiff and Cornwall.

Last place you were?
Yesterday I was at work and my house before visiting Piotr's family, this morning we're still at the other side of London, but we're in London at least (zone 6 is an effort to reach... from zone 2)


Do you have a crush?
I'm forever crushing on my boyfriend, I think it's healthy to be in a place where they're forever attractive to you. (Mentally and physically)

Last time you kissed someone?
A couple of minutes ago, when I left bed and someone is too hungover to leave bed, so he got a kiss and allowance to stay in bed haha.


Last time you were insulted?
I don't really remember anything specific, other than a customer at work verbally abusing me over a month ago. He called me various names, wasn't pleasant.

Favourite flavour of sweet?
Berry flavoured; raspberry, strawberry, blackberry etc.

What instruments do you play?
When I was younger I played a few instruments; flute, recorder, bit of violin and piano. Ever since my school messed up my options for GCSE I never really kept up the skill, but I do still own some recorders and a flute.

Favourite piece of jewellery?
I actually own so much jewellery; a couple of years ago I would've said my pandora bracelet but I don't wear it much now. My favourite piece of jewellery that I wear all the time is probably the gold star currently in my tragus.

Last sport you played?
I've never been a sporty person, I could manage sports but that was it. I always preferred dance, particularly ballet. But that said, I stopped going to ballet when I was 17 and I really miss it.

Last song you sang?
Burn by Ellie Goulding.

Last time you hung out with anyone?
This weekend I've spent time with Piotr and his family, last weekend I saw my bestie so I've had a pretty sociable couple of weeks without realising it.


Who should answer these questions next? 
Anyone who wants to, it was quite enjoyable. There's a lot of questions but they're not too hard to answer, which is nice.


 
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