Thursday, 29 January 2015

• January 2015 Favourites •

I'm so excited to share this month's favourites with you; I have some oldies but goodies, and a few newbies that I'm already loving.

There is no better eye cream/eyelash nourisher than Vaseline. I use this on and around my eyes and eyelashes every single night and my eyes feel so moisturised the next morning. I used to be subscribed to Birchbox and would always receive eye creams, and I'd think 'meh, it's ok' but nothing was as good as Vaseline. I swear by this, and it's so cheap that I always urge everyone to try it.

This was one of the first MAC lipsticks that I ever bought and it holds dear memories close to my heart (does anyone else every get that with make up and scents?!). I bought this way before the whole Kyle Jenner trend but it's now becoming a popular one to get that browny, darker nude. It's a matte lipstick, which is my favourite type of lipstick (this changes on the regular) and it goes on so creamy whilst lasting all day. It's obviously a MAC lipstick so the quality is up there, but this is definitely my favourite MAC lipstick that I own and I'll have to make a cheeky repurchase soon.

I'm trying to incorporate more colour into my make up so a purple pencil is the perfect way to do it for my brown eyes and pale colouring. Lust is a gorgeous deep purple shade and looks so beautiful both on top of the lid in a cat-eye fashion and smudged below the lash line.

Lady Gaga 'Fame' Eau de Parfum
Ok, don't judge me. I've gone from raving about the sexy, sophisticated Philosykos to this. But I honestly think this smells amazing and it's quite different from what I normally go for. The scent is quite sweet and fruity, and for a more affordable perfume, it lasts all day. I've been complimented on it a few times and when I mentioned that it was Lady Gaga's perfume, there were a few shocked faces!

Sephora Spoolies
I'm allllll about the brows at the moment and I'm trying to grow them out for a bushier, fuller look so they do need some taming in that area. The hairs are quite long and I've been relying on these spoolies along with clear brow gel to set them in place. I've really been loving these ones as they are the perfect shape and length, making them perfect for travel. Plus they were free - bonus.

Milani Blush in Dolce Pink
I wish wish wish we could get Milani over in the UK and I'm using this blush sparingly because it's absolutely beautiful and I will cry when it runs out! I sometimes find it hard to wear a pinky pink blush because I'm very pale with dark features, but Dolce Pink is perfect and has a very faint golden shimmer running through it, making it really wearable. It's a mix between a blush and a highlight and it's also stunning worn over other blushes. You can see a swatch of it here, and I can almost guarantee you'll swoon over it like I do!

Maybelline Eraser Eye Concealer in Light
I was very late to the hype with this one as I feel like everyone has been raving about this product for a good few years, but I finally hopped on that bandwagon on a particularly stressful morning when I was late to a wedding due to my concealer exploding all over me (yep, this really happened). I'd never tried the Maybelline concealer before but from the reviews I'd read, I trusted it and ran to Boots to buy one. It really did save the day as I was more than impressed with the coverage, application and lasting power of the concealer. It's quite thin but is really pigmented, and I've found that when set with a translucent powder, it doesn't crease or budge. A definite winner that I've used nearly everyday in January.

Wet Brush
Apologies for how gross my brush looks - that is the product of using this brush too often with a shed load of dry shampoo in my hair! I used to own the Tangle Teezer (more on that in a comparison post) but this brush has completely thrown that out of the park. The bristles are so soft, my hair doesn't feel like it's being tugged or ripped out and it really does work well with both wet and dry hair. I can't recommend this brush enough and have already managed to covert a few people to it.

Game of Thrones book
I just had to include this book as a favourite because I've literally been glued to it at every chance I get. I'm a huge GoT fan and I've watched the series religiously, so when I received the book box set for Christmas I was overjoyed. The book is so beautifully written; the character descriptions are absolutely amazing and everything is so detailed, yet to easy to read. I can sit there for hours with this book in hand and endless cups of tea - I think it'll take me about 2 years to read the whole box set but the books are incredible and I urge you to try them if you're a big reader or just a fan of GoT.

What have you been enjoying this month, beauty or lifestyle-wise?
Have you tried any of my favourites?
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Sunday, 25 January 2015

• Have we gone Social-Media-mad? •

I was inspired to write this post when, yesterday, I was out for lunch and a couple came and sat down next to us. 

They both whipped out their phones and went straight onto Facebook, as if this were normal. And they didn't put their phones away. I was confused; I thought, 'but this is wrong'. They literally sat there, phones in hand, for the duration of their meal. Not only did they seem rude to the waitress, whom they were ignoring, but the only words they uttered were 'we'll split the bill' at the end of the meal. And I can remember thinking, 'what the hell has happened to us?!'

Social media has taken over our lives. I'll be the first to put my hands up and admit that in 2014, I would snap a picture for instagram instead of just enjoying the moment; I would tweet every few hours to ensure my followers knew I was still there; I would check my Facebook to have a nosey at everyone else lives. It's sad, but true; we really have become obsessed with social media and we become stressed when we're not on it. Maybe it's the easy, instant access to the internet that has caused this? Maybe it's because cafes and restaurants now usually have free wifi? Which brings me to my next point - why do we need free wifi in a restaurant? I can understand a cafe; it's quite nice to sit there with a coffee and do work. But doesn't wifi in a restaurant make it easier for couples/friends to just sit there on their phones instead of actually conversing with one another?

In a world where technology is developing and it's becoming easier to instagram our dinners or tweet our blog links, I think we need to establish a line that should never be crossed. I'm still at a point where I say 'excuse me, I'm so sorry' when my phone rings and I'm eating with another person. I still feel embarrassed when I get a text mid-conversation and I automatically look down to catch a glimpse of it. In my Psychology degree, I learnt that the number one reason for the end of relationships, be that with a partner or friend, is the loss of manners. A simple please, a quick thank you, and the effort to have a conversation with someone is so important for us human beings. Yet, we turn to a piece of metal to make us feel appreciated.

I'm proposing black-out Sunday at our place, and that means no laptops, no phones, no technology, no nothing, all day long (except to set our alarms for the next day - that's a necessity). I want to see if we can actually do it. I don't ever want to turn into that person that makes people feel awkward because a phone is always in their hand - I used to have a friend that did this, and it still makes me cringe now. I want to continue to be a good conversationalist, and never lose touch of what that really means.

I'd love to know your thoughts on this; please leave them in a comment.
Do you agree with me? Or disagree?
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Monday, 19 January 2015

• Tarte Pin Up Girl Amazonian Clay 12-Hour Blush Palette // review •

This palette contains five stunning shades, ranging from cool to warm, peach to pink. In a word: swoon.

If you're a regular reader, you'll know that 2014 was the year that I delved into blush. I was always more of a bronzer kinda gal, but I definitely experimented more with blush last year and came to really love it. I went from peach to mauve, shimmery to matte and really found what worked for me. If I'd owned this palette then, I wouldn't have needed to buy any more blushes to experiment with, because there is literally all you would need in one palette in the Tarte Pin Up Girl Amazonian Clay Blush Palette. 

You can tell from the photos that it is absolutely gorgeous. Everything from the packaging to the pigmentation wowed me and the quality is fantastic, a real tribute to the Tarte brand itself. The blushes blend beautifully, are so long-wearing and I feel like the shades have been chosen really really well. Breathless, a peachy bronzey nude is perfect for everyday as it looks very natural whilst still making me look alive at 6.30am. Embraced is a shimmery mauve that is perfect for Autumn/Winter (although I'm not one to stick to times of the year and shades), but I feel like it would look lovely with pale skin. Whimsy, a bright pink with a slight sheen, is one that I didn't think would suit me but looks lovely to perk the skin up with a simple make up look. Bashful is the most gorgeous coral mixed with a highlighter, so two products in one. Irreplaceable is a pinky mauve, my favourite of the five, and probably the easiest for me to wear as it's closest to my natural blush shade. The shades are all exclusive to the palette which excites me, and when I compare them to the Tarte blush I already own in Natural Beauty, I can't see a difference in quality. I've been getting so much use from this palette and it's fun to switch up my look everyday!

Have you tried this palette?
What do you think of Tarte blushes?
A huge thank you to Expat Makeup Addict as I won this palette in her blog giveaway!
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Monday, 12 January 2015

• Pixi Glow Tonic - is it worth the hype? •

I'd read so much about this 'cult' product and completely gave in to the hype - so I had very high expectations.

I'd read that the Pixi Glow Tonic was a gentler version of the Alpha H Liquid Gold liquid exfoliator, and as I'm a bit of a wimp (with semi-sensitive skin), I decided to go for the Glow Tonic to start me off, with a view to working my way up to Alpha H. Bloggers and vloggers were claiming that the tonic would help with scarring by gently removing the top layer of the skin, much as a manual exfoliator would do, and since I have acne scarring on my cheeks and chin, this aspect really interested me. I'd read that after applying the toner with a cotton pad, younger, smoother looking skin would be revealed to make it easier to apply make up, give a healthy glow and remover any lumps and bumps that are on the skin. So - I was very excited to pick up my first bottle on a trip to Liberty's in London.

I've been using this for 7 weeks. Nothing has happened. Honestly, I'm pretty gutted.

When something is so hyped up, so talked about, there is no other way to describe the way I'm feeling than 'disappointed'. I really wanted this to work for me, but it has truly done nothing for my skin. My scars don't appear lighter, my make up doesn't go on any smoother than when I use my LUSH Tea Tree Toner Water (which is amazing, by the way) and there is no improvement in the tone, texture or appearance of my skin. I really don't get it. I gave this product 7 weeks to work, which may or may not be long enough, but I'm just confused as to why this product is so raved about. It doesn't do anything that my other toners to do, and in fact, it's a bit of a pain in the ass to use as you have to swipe it on with a cotton pad whereas I just spray my face with my other toners.

I'll keep using this product as it cost me £18 (!!!!!) and I'm not prepared to waste it, and if it starts to work (doubt it), I'll update you. I'm hoping that there will be some dramatic difference in my skin as it's such an internationally loved product that has been famous for years. Perhaps it's just me and my skin; everyone is different - but I really feel like the only one. I can't seem to find a bad review about this product so I'm not saying to completely avoid it, but I definitely won't be repurchasing, and I'm starting to think that maybe I'm just a manual exfoliator kinda gal.

Have you tried this product?
What did you think about it?
Don't forget to 
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Friday, 9 January 2015

• Canada Beauty Haul // Sephora & Target •

I had a list, I stuck to it (for the most part), and I picked up so many glorious products that I've been wanting to try for a very long time!

My mission was to basically pick things up that you can't get or are difficult to get in the UK. I know that Sephora now ships to the UK but the shipping is extortionate and some of the products are unavailable for international postage, so I decided to make my move when I went on my Christmas holiday. I made numerous trips to Sephora and picked up a few things each time to soften the blow when I popped my debit card in. I also visited so many Targets that I lost count whilst on my quest to find the NYX stand (which, by the way, is very hard to find in Canada) and I can happily say I'm now the proud owner of 8 butter glosses. I'll be reviewing many of the products in future posts, but for now, I hope you enjoy reading and casting your eyes over the mass of beauty that I picked up.
Strawberry Parfait - Creme Brûlée - Peaches and Cream - Vanilla Cream Pie - Tiramisu - Meringue - Maple Blondie
Maybelline Lust for Blush - Maybelline Ravishing Rose - Milani Dolce Pink

OCC Lip Tar in Stalker

I'd say this is probably the mother of all of the hauls I've posted!
Have you tried any of these products?
Don't forget to
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Tuesday, 6 January 2015

• Huge Bath and Body Works Haul •

So things got a little crazy on the candle front...

When you spend a few years watching YouTube and reading blogs, I think it's safe to say that you begin to get a little bit obsessed with Bath and Body Works. Particularly their candles. Particularly when they are unavailable in the UK. So I made my way there not one, not two, but six times. Yes, I was on a mission to go to as many BABW as I could whilst on holiday in Canada. I picked up nine candles and three hand soaps; they should satisfy my craving until my next trip to Canada (which will be soon, I hope). I also bought a ridiculous amount of make up and skincare whilst out there - seriously, my suitcase was bulging - so there will be a post full of Sephora and Target goodness coming your way very soon!
Papaya Sunrise - Hot Buttered Rum
Fireside - Japanese Cherry Blossom
Ocean Driftwood - Endless Weekend
Heirloom Pumpkin - Warm Caramel Cider
Kitchen Lemon Hand Soap - Perfect Beach Day Foaming Hand Soap - Pacific Cool Breeze Foaming Hand Soap

If you live in Canada or the States, or if you're planning on a trip there soon, I'm not sure if all of these products will still be in the stores as they may just be Christmas products, but if they are around, I really recommend you smell them. My favourites are Ocean Driftwood (smells just like Abercrombie and Fitch) and Hot Buttered Rum (says it all).

Has BABW stolen your heart, as it has mine?
What are your favourite scents?
Don't forget to...
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin

Saturday, 3 January 2015

• 14 Reasons Why I Loved 2014 •

1. I qualified as a teacher and landed my dream job;
2. I made happy memories with happy people in lots of restaurants;
3. I moved into my own lovely little place with my boyfriend;
4. I finally made it to Sephora (it's been my dream for years);
5. I had a big hair chop and spontaneously went for ombre/balayage;
6. My blog reached 750 followers!;
7. I became a hamster owner;
8. I reconnected with some of my friends from years ago;
9. I bought my first DSLR (Canon 600D) and have been challenging myself with the manual setting;
10. I ate 'all you can eat sushi' and pigged out massively;
11. I reached many personal goals by stepping/tiptoeing out of my comfort zone;
12. I stopped going on Facebook so much;
13.  I attended blogger events and met so many amazing people;
14. I went to Canada and the USA, and loved it!

I hope you've all had an amazing year!
I'm not one to preach but; every year we get older, every year we get wiser, we should be lucky that we're around to see the calendar year change, so we must make the most of it and think
'screw it; will this decision really affect my life in 10 years time?'
Happy new year!
Daniela xo
Follow on Bloglovin