Wednesday, 30 July 2014

A Quick Trip To Amsterdam

I had a whistle stop tour of Amsterdam with my Mum at the end of last last week, she was there for business and I decided to tag along (yay for airmiles!). Amsterdam is one of those places I've always wanted to see so when the opportunity came to go I jumped at the chance so off we went at 4:00am for an hours flight into Schiphol Airport. Once my Mum had finished her meetings and I had had a nap we spent the rest of the day ambling through the tiny canal lined streets past suspicious smelling cafes and dodgy looking shops (yeah THAT kind!). That was when we realised we were probably going in the wrong direction! It was an eye opener to say the least and no, I didn't go anywhere near the red light district or the dodgy cafes!

It really is a beautiful city with such quirky architecture that's so different to the British architecture I'm used to. Apparently there used to be a tax on how wide you built your house hence all the strangely slim buildings squashed in next to each other that Amsterdam is so famous for. It really is a beautiful, unique city and so picturesque!

After some lunch and a little shopping, we successfully managed to avoid being run down by the hundreds of people on bikes whizzing through the streets and made it to our canal pizza cruise for a guided tour of the city. It was a slightly strange set up, you chose which pizza you wanted before you boarded and 15 minutes in to the tour we stopped to pick them up. We did expect to get a table to ourselves considering we'd paid good money for it but by the time we got there all the tables were taken so we had to share. Thankfully we sat next to a really lovely young couple from Australia who were holidaying their way around Europe. They were really chatty so thankfully no awkwardness there. 

Unfortunately one place I missed out on seeing was Anne Frank's House, her story is one I've always been fascinated by since reading her diaries when I was younger. I managed to see the building from the outside but the queue to go in was huge, even at half past eight at night so there was no way we were going to get tickets. If I ever visit again, I'll be sure to book tickets way in advance!   

Amsterdam is definitely one of those  cities that you can see in a day quite happily. I didn't really know much about the place before I went there so I had no idea what to see and where to go. I may well have missed all the good stuff without realising! But do you know what, I really enjoyed just wondering around aimlessly! It's much more laid back than most other cities and has such a great feel about it that you don't feel as if you need to rush, I'd highly recommend a weekend visit!


Tuesday, 29 July 2014

How To Get Victoria Secret Style, Wavy Hair

I thought it was about time I did another hair tutorial considering the last time I did one it was about 6 months ago, woops! I like to call this look 'Bloggers Hair' because it's how a lot of fashion and beauty bloggers wear their hair, in loose, carefree waves with a middle parting. It literally only takes 10 minutes to do so it's great for first thing before school or work when you haven't got too much time to style your hair as you don't have to worry about it looking too perfect. 

You will need:
  • A Curling Iron (at least 1 1/4 inch)
  • Strong Hold Hairspray
  • A Paddle Brush.
  • Works best on medium to long hair.

How To - Loose, Voluminous Waves:
  • Put your hair roughly in to a centre parting
  • Split your hair in to two down the middle
  • Stating from the back (no need to section) curl pieces of hair aproximately 4cm wide making sure to curl in the direction away from the face only. 
  • Repeat throughout the whole head of hair.
  • Curl from half way down the head only.

  • The aim is for it not to look perfect so if there are parts that aren't completely curled then that's ok. 
  • Leave for around half an hour or even just while you do your make up for the curls to cool and set.
  • Brush through the curls to loosen either with a paddle brush of your fingers, giving it a good shake to seperate the curls for more of a wave.
  • Make sure to push it up at the top so it's not flat against your head. A little bit of back combing might be needed at this point.
  • Finally give it a good spray with a strong hold hairspray. I like to use good old L'Oreal Elnette hairspray, my Granny always used to use it and her hair wouldn't move an inch! 

There you have it, gorgeous loose waves to rival any Victoria Secret model! What's great about this hairstyle is that it looks just as good the next day when the waves are slighter looser, it's more of a cool, undone look. I've only just started doing my hair this way but now I don't want to wear it any other way. I like that it doesn't look over styled, as if I just woke up that morning and my hair was just the right amount of wavy! Oh and in case you're wondering, I used the Remington Jumbo Curling Iron similar to this one.

Let me know if you'd like me to do any more hair tutorials and what styles you'd like to see!


Tuesday, 22 July 2014

When Did Blogging Stop Being 'Fun'?

I'm sure you've already guessed what this post is about just from reading the title and it's a pretty controversial one at that. I love a good healthy discussion and it's not something I've ever done on my blog before but it's a subject that I've been thinking about a lot recently and I'm interested to hear other people's opinions on the matter.

When did blogging stop being fun? I'm not saying there aren't any people left who blog just as a hobby because there are tons, or even that I no longer find blogging fun, just that blogging is fast becoming big business and I'm not quite sure where this leaves me as a blogger or where I fit in. This past year has seen a sharp rise in bloggers being taken much more seriously by brands who are finally seeing the huge selling power of blogs. It's something that many bloggers have been striving for for years and I'm all for it if it means they are rewarded for all the hard work they put in.

What does this mean for the rest of us bloggers? Does it mean that fame and fortune and working with top name brands is what we should be striving for? Obviously that's something we need to decide for ourselves. Something I've been asking myself a lot recently is why I continue to blog. It started as a distraction during a difficult period of my life but now that I no longer have purpose for it in that way, I'm not really sure what I want out of it. It's a tough situation to be in, I've noticed that many of those who freely admit they want fame and fortune through their blog get looked down upon by many of the blogging community. Honestly I don't see why, there's nothing wrong with ambition, you'd strive to be at the top of your game in any other business so why not blogging.
Is there only so much room at the top? Does first come first served mean newer bloggers aren't getting a look in? Many of the top bloggers have been working hard for years to get their blogs noticed so it's only right that they should see the benefits, but with so much more competition now from other blogs than there has ever been, the divide between the two seems so much more prominent.

With this new potential for blogging as a career, does it still have it's place as just a hobby? Everything about blogging has become more business like. In this new wave of the internet celebrity, social media has become an extension of our own 'personal brand'. With that comes added pressure, suddenly it's not enough to just be a blogger, you have to master instagram, facebook, twitter and youtube too. Blogs themselves have become top quality with pictures that wouldn't look out of place in magazines. (I can't be the only one who's jealous of all these bloggers with amazing photographer boyfriends!) I'm just starting to wonder if maybe we've sacrificed what used to be completely personal and unique about blogging, a space for people to air their thoughts with other like minded people for just another thing that can be manipulated by big companies to make money out of. Or maybe I'm just being way too cynical and still no where closer to deciding my place as a blogger.

Thoughts? Let me know below!


Saturday, 19 July 2014

What's In My Makeup Bag - Summer Edition

What started off as a 'What's In My Makeup Bag' post has, to be honest with you, turned in to an excuse to show off the super cute makeup bag my sister got me for my birthday. I mean c'mon, It's got my name on it, what could be better than that?! I've started using it to carry around the products I might need throughout the day so if you wanna see what they are then keep reading. 

Let's start off with the base, in the summer I tend to switch to a tinted moisturiser rather than a heavy foundation but with the Bourjois CC Cream I feel like I have the best of both worlds and I can easily apply it with my fingers if I'm in a rush. Teamed up with the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer to keep any pesky spots covered and my skin looks clear and fresh all day long and thanks to my favourite travel companion, the No7 Pop and Glow Cream Blush Stick in the shade 'Rose Blossom', I no longer look pasty faced half way through the day. Trust me, If you're feeling tired and worn out, a little of this cream blush instantly makes you more awake which makes it a must for me when I'm travelling.

On to the eyes, I tend to carry round a mascara with me just to give it a little refresh half way through the day or to vamp it up a bit for the evening. My favourite L'Oreal Miss Manga Mascara does the job perfectly!, the brush really seperates the lashes so I don't have to think too much about what I'm doing and dries quickly so no smudging. A liquid liner in my bag is a must to keep my cat eye flick looking fresh, I'm guilty of forgetting I have eyeliner on and rubbing my eyes, especially when I'm tired and there is nothing worse than patchy eye liner. The Rimmel Glam'Eyes Liquid Liner makes it so easy to apply when I'm in a rush.

Lastly, for my lips, my two favourites; YSL Rouge Volupte Lipstick in the shade 'Peach Passion' for during the day and Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm in 210 'Unapologetic' for an evening look. Peaches and pinks are what I stick to with my skin tone and these two are staples in my makeup bag for the summer.

Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream (Review) - £9.99
Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer - £4.19
No7 Pop and Glow Cream Blush Stick - £9.95
L'Oreal Miss Manga Mascara (Review) - £8.99
Rimmel Glam'Eyes Liquid Liner - £5.29
YSL Rouge Volupte Lipstick (Review) - £24.50
Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm - £7.99


NEW CID Cosmetics Free With Cosmopolitan August 2014

Just a quick heads up that Cosmopolitan UK is giving away a few New CID Cosmetics products with their August 2014 issue! It's a great opportunity to try out a British beauty brand that you might otherwise have never given a chance before. There's four products to choose from: three i-crayons, lip and cheek tints in shades Rose Tint, Strawberry Souffle and Plum Cordial as well as a black mascara up for grabs, all worth £60 in total.

I picked the shade 'Plum Cordial' a rich purple red colour which turned out to be more of a pinky red when I applied it. I used it on both my lips and cheeks and I have to say I think I prefer it as a cheek stain rather than a lip stain. It felt quite sticky and glossy on my lips which I didn't really like whereas on my cheeks it blended in really well and gave me a natural pink flush.

I definitely think it's worth picking up a copy just to give New CID Cosmetics a try for only £3.70!


Tuesday, 15 July 2014

OOTD - A Girl With A Backpack

// Dress - Handmade Vintage Fair // Backpack - Primark (last year) // Necklace - Primark // Sandals - New Look //

Woo another outfit post, I'm on a roll! However, until I persuade someone with a bit of free time to take pictures of me in more interesting locations, it's just me with the self timer set in my back garden I'm afraid!

I'm totally in love with this dress I picked up at a vintage fair a few weeks back. Technically it's not actually vintage... but I love it all the same! The girl who sold it to me makes all the dresses on her stall by hand in the most amazing array of fabrics I have ever seen. I'm not kidding, there was so many beautiful colours and patterns I could have taken them all home and just had a wardrobe full of tea dresses, one for each day! 

This 60's style geometric print was what really caught my eye, it's easy to just throw on on a warm day when I want to feel comfortable but don't feel like dressing up much. This is pretty much a typical summer outfit for me on days when I'm just running errands and generally having a lazy day. I paired it up with this cute leather/canvas backpack I found at the back of my Sister's wardrobe, white sandals from New Look that literally go with everything, and finished off with my favourite orange lipstick that for some reason appears red in every picture (It's Sleek 'Papaya Punch' if you're interested!). I'm also wearing a really cute gold necklace from Primark but unfortunately you can't really see it, you'll just have to take my word that it's awesome. 

I'm pretty sure I've already mentioned Lou Lou's Vintage fair here on my blog but in case you missed it, go take a look at their facebook page. They hold fairs all over the UK so you're bound to found one or two  held near you.


Sunday, 13 July 2014

Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream Review

I've been itching to try a CC cream for ages, basically I just wanted to see what all the fuss was about (talk about being late to the bandwagon!). On a spur of the moment I decided to pick up the Bourjois 123 Perfect CC cream whilst shopping for my holiday toiletries and decided on the shade 33 'Rose Beige', which is a couple of shades darker than what I would normally go for. My thoughts being that I was likely to get a tan on holiday and it would be perfect to use for the rest of the summer. 

The Bourjois CC cream promises to be anti-fatigue, anti-redness and anti-dark spots which it lives up to to a extent. It covered all the little scars and marks left by spots really well to the point when I no longer felt the need to use concealer over the top. It didn't exactly fare so well on the dark circles under my eyes but I like to use a brightening concealer there any way so this wasn't much of a concern. 

As for the CC or 'colour correcting' part I have to say I'm not convinced. After a quick search on the internet, there doesn't seem to be anything scientific about how a CC cream works, it seems like it's just another name for a tinted moisturiser. Honestly though I don't want to be too negative because I actually really like this product and will more than likely continue using it throughout the summer. I like that it provides light to medium coverage yet feels incredibly light on my skin as well as being spf 15 so I know that my skin is protected during the summer months. There is just one thing that's bothering me though, please Bourjois include more colours in the range because at the moment it's limited only to light skin and I'm sure there is plenty of girls with darker skin in the UK who'd love to try it!

Oh and yes that it me with a tan in the picture above, honestly that's pretty tanned for me, a girl who's normally white as a sheet most months of  the year!

Bourjois 123 Perfect CC Cream - £9.99

P.S. This is my first post using my new dslr (a canon 1200d if anyone's interested!). Going from a bridge camera to a dslr is taking a little getting used to so my pictures may not be quite right until I've figured it all out!

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