Thursday, 28 May 2015

Talkative Thursday: birthday, exams and wishlist

Hey everyone! Quick post today! It is my birthday today (28th May) and I have a university exam tomorrow. Due to commuting in, I have to be awake at 5am to get a bus at 6:15am, it is a three hour journey. As it has been my birthday I have been looking at bits I would like to treat myself too, so I am going to share that with you!

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Firstly is the sleek Contour kit in light. I have heard so much about sleek and their palettes and have never tried them! As I have so many palettes, I would like to try out this contour kit as I have heard very positive things about them!

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Secondly is this MAC lipstick in the shade ruby woo. Again this is a popular shade and I have not tried any MAC products as I tend to stick to the cheaper high street brands. I would be interested to see how MAC's lipsticks compare to the ones I use on a day to day basis such as MUA and Model's own.

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Thirdly is Nivea's 3 in 1 micellar water. I have previously stated in my April favourites how much I love Garnier's micellar water. Nivea's micellar water costs about the same as Garnier's but you get half as much, does this make it twice as good? I would love to buy the nivea one and write a blog post comparing the two side by side.

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Lastly are Barry M's sunset nail varnishes.  I love the look of "peach for the stars" and "the way you make me teal". These nail varnishes only work with the sunset top coat. I am a big fan of Barry M's nail varnishes and always want the latest ones they bring out!

These are four things I really want to buy, hopefully I will buy at least one or two of these! I have spent the day relaxing and doing some revision, need to be up at 5am for the commute in! Have you tried any of the products from this wishlist?

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

MUA spring break eye shadow palette review

Hey everyone, just a couple of days until my birthday! As I have already begun celebrating it, I have been trying out some of the goodies I won in a competition from the lovely @E_A_BEAUTY .
This is the spring break palette from MUA. For those who do not know, MUA, Make Up Academy, is exclusive to Superdrug and do a massive range of very affordable make up, with many items starting from just £1!

The spring break palette is a part of MUA's spring collection of 2015. This palette has some gorgeous shimmers, in pinks, greens and neutral, perfect for spring! My favourites from this palette that I have been wearing are the neutrals and the pinks. I am not one for wearing pink shades but they are beautiful, not over powering nor bright.

This palette costs £4 in store and online for all of the colours above. It is fantastic value, making each colour 33p each! I find MUA eyeshadows last a decent amount of time without a need to reapply. Some bloggers have mentioned about the packaging of MUA's eye shadow palettes. There are more sturdy ones out there, but those cost more then £4! I dropped my matte palette from MUA onto a wooden floor, the lid did break so is now held on by sellotape but only half of one colour shattered, which considering it fell some distance, I thought was really good!

I am a big fan of MUA and use a lot of their make up and would recommend them, they are great value for money. Let me know below if you have used MUA before and what colours you like from this palette!

Thursday, 14 May 2015

Talkative Thursday - mental health awareness week

Hi everyone, this week's talkative Thursday is an important topic to me. It is mental health awareness week from the 11-17th of May. I have seen a lot of articles online regarding this and I have seen many selfies online showing everyone what someone with mental health looks like. Below is a picture of myself, wearing my finest pyjamas!

For those who do not know, I have suffered with depression for 7 years and I suffer with paranoia and GAD, generalised anxiety disorder. I will not go through the ins and outs of what I have experienced due to triggering the emotions of others. I would like to talk about this in more detail but this blog, for me, is not the place to do so.

As self conscious as I am due to bullying all throughout school and even in recent times I have had strangers say horrible things to me, particularly about my weight, spreading the awareness of mental health issues is really important to me, which is why I have posted the picture above. As shown above, there are no visible signs of my mental health problems. The worst things people say to me that make me feel even worse is saying "cheer up" or "we all have bad days". This really frustrates me as it is not just having a bad day, I wake up feeling like this every single day. The feelings I have never go away completely, some days are better when I dislike myself less, but it is still there, lurking in the background.

For someone who has no experience of mental health, the best thing you can do is read about it, read about some symptoms of mental health issues, MIND is a particularly good website for this. Also read some blog posts, from people who experience mental health issues. Reading literature would not take a very long time, but can give the insight that is needed for those who know very little about mental health problems.

I would like to end on the note that we do not choose to suffer with mental health conditions, they are very much a real and not very understood thing. I hope in the future more research is undertaken to learn a lot more about mental health problems. I also hope there is less stigma attached to mental health, this has improved in the past years but is still very much a problem.

I would also like to apologise for the lack of posts, it has been a hard time for myself and my family, but I am going to be blogging more in the upcoming weeks!

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Talkative Thursday: #PRrequest is it good for the blogging community?

Hello everyone! I wanted to keep with the talkative Thursday that I used to do on a weekly basis, this just gives me 1 post a week that may not necessarily be about beauty and could be about anything! This is a topic that has been on my twitter timeline a fair amount recently and well; 140 characters is not enough to give much opinion on PR request. So below I will break it down, some of the arguments and concerns and I will be giving my opinion, of course it is completely fine to disagree or agree, we are all different after all!

What is PRrequest?

For those who like me who have not used #PRrequest, it is a hashtag on twitter where companies and blogs look to work with each other. This often involves a company sending a product for a blogger to review for their audience, normally money is not exchanged but sometimes, especially with larger blogs or even vlogs, money can be exchanged as well. This can also happen without the use of the hashtag, companies can email bloggers with PR requests or vice versa.

My opinion of PRrequest?

I have not contacted nor been contacted by a company to test and review a product. I am PR friendly but it honestly has not happened. I believe that PRrequests are not the reason to get into any form or blogging, it is unlikely a newer blogger will get requests and it is more likely they would give up with blogging due to a lack of free items. I have ordered and still order samples from websites that have for example 10,000 to give away to entice people to buy the full sized product. A good website for this is magicfreebies (UK only). I honestly believe it is a good thing for both companies and bloggers.

The benefits for companies

I think it is a great way for a company to get a review delivered to a target audience, rather then a random audience via an internet or magazine advert. This tends to be cheaper for a company, it costs them to deliver the product and the cost of giving an item away for free, but as mentioned above, the audience reached tends to be the target audience for the company, therefore it is more likely they will make more sales.

The benefits for bloggers

Well it gives bloggers a chance to try new products and they might find something they like but would never have tried before! It can also bring in more views to the blog, especially when the company also share the blog, which could result in more followers. Also building a relationship with a company can also mean this happens more often and in some cases it could result in a job or exciting projects!

When PRrequests are bad

Sometimes PRrequests can be negative for a blog, especially when a blogger accepts a product that has very little relevance to their blog, which could result in a loss of followers and a low view count. I also am not a big fan of seeing bloggers beg for free items, I think it is not professional, I know many blogs are for fun and a blog like mine is written in a very laid back style, so therefore are not professional as such, but I still think nearly begging for products for review is going to put followers and companies off!

What if a company contacts me?

Well I have never experienced this, so to be honest I am not sure! But I would first check the email itself, if it asks for your bank account details for delivery or something, do not! There are scams out there unfortunately. Research the company, are they a company you have heard of? Are they a new or more established company? Research the product they want you to review, is it relevant to your blog and followers? Accept or decline, you can decline them, do not feel inclined to review a product for whatever reason. When writing the review, be honest! Do not feel inclined to write a good review because the item was free, a part of being a blogger is honesty to those who read your blog, they may buy one themselves!

Anyway overall I am for PRrequests and I do believe it is predominately good for the companies, bloggers and the audience! I do think it is a pretty controversial topic for bloggers, there are those both for and against them and at the end of the day, it is up to the blogger what they talk about on their blog, blogging is supposed to be personal and fun right?

Friday, 1 May 2015

April Favourites 2015

Hi everyone! I am back and today I am sharing my April favourites. With packing everything, moving it all miles back home and unpacking my make up, I have fallen in love with some older products as well as a beautiful bag that I have been using non stop! None of these products are that expensive and all can be found on the high street, so let's crack on with it!

I will start off with the oldest product here and that is the Body Shop's Love Etc Eau de parfum. As you can see in the picture I have nearly gone through two bottles and I have already gone though one more that was in a gift set. So saying I really like this perfume is an under statement! Being asthmatic, I have to be really careful with what deodorants, body sprays and perfumes I use. Love Etc is a really gentle Jasmine, vanilla and sandalwood fragrance, it lasts a few hours but isn't overpowering. Another plus with this perfume is the box, it is white with rainbow hearts and anyone who knows me knows I love lots of bright colours!

The second product I will discuss is the Garnier Micellar water. I remember Beauty bloggers and Youtubers absolutely loving this when it first came out and I was a bit late to the trend. I honestly wasn't sure on Garnier doing a make up remover/cleanser, as someone who dies their hair a lot and uses Garnier hair dye I was sceptical. But honestly especially for those with sensitive skin or rosacea like me, this works wonders! It does not irritate my skin nor my eyes. I find this product best used with big cotton pads, I bought some in Boots and I found them in the baby section, the bigger cotton pads makes using this so much easier! The only thing I will mention is that the bottle states 400ml = 200 uses, I am nearly half way through the bottle and I don't think I have used it 50 times, never mind 100. I do find this so much better to use then make up wipes and would recommend you to try it.

The next most recent item here is the real techniques expert face brush. It has only been in the past year or so that I have been using brushes, I was one of those who used sponges. Being honest I can still use sponges to apply make up and I do not mind it, but I do prefer a brush now. I had been using two Body shop foundation brushes but after months of practise, I just could not get on with the shape of it and was alternating between that and sponges. So many youtubers and bloggers have spoken about real techniques brushes and I had been recommended them so many times, I just had to try it. Having amazon prime, I bought it from amazon and I got on with it straight away. I like the fact that it has 2 colour bristles which makes cleaning it so much easier, maybe I should have cleaned mine before, oops! They brushes are even cheaper then the equivalent from the Body Shop, though I do still use the body shop eye shadow brush which is really good. I am digressing, I would like to add more real techniques brushes to my collection of, erm, one. I have been using the expert face brush for months now and I would not use anything else, not even a sponge!

Next is Zoella beauty's creamy madly dreamy. I really like Zoella (Zoe Sugg), I have been subscribed to her youtube channels for months if not over a year. She is a digital ambassador for the mental health MIND, and as someone who suffers with anxiety and panic attacks, she is very relatable to me. I find during late spring into autumn, I tend to favour body lotions over body butters as they are much lighter. Until Zoella beauty's, I had been using SPA Sanctuary body lotion this is a little bit more expensive but you do get more product. I do prefer Zoella beauty's body lotion, I like the smell of both but I like the packaging of creamy madly dreamy more, not only the look but it is much easier for my little hands to squeeze out of the tube! The product itself is really good, I can imagine some people being sceptical, just paying for the Zoella name, but it is enriched with vitamin E, aloe and shea butter and my skin feels softer after using it for 3 weeks.

Lastly the most recent addition purchase is the Satchel from New Look. In store it was only available in the one colour but online it is available in four different colours. My old bag from Matalan had broken really badly, both press studs had ripped off, the strap on one side was barely hanging on, so it was time to buy a new bag. When I saw this bag with all the others, it caught my eye and I knew it was the bag for me, despite me looking at all the others. Another plus was it had £5 off and it still does online! This bag fits my uni book, water, cereal bars, a metro newspaper, my keys and quite a bit more. The inside has 1 zipped compartment and 1 pocket which I find great for putting keys, MP3 player and a pen in. I have been using this for uni and for going out to town, it goes with pretty much everything I wear and I think it is great for under £15!

They are my April favourites for 2015. I'm sure for my May favourites there will again be a mixture of make up and beauty products as I continue to unpack. With it being the first of May I would love to hear your favourites! Have you written a favourites post? Give me a link to it below in the comments, also are you liking any the products I am at the moment? With university work, blog posts with be a bit limited at the moment but I am aiming for 2-3 blog posts a week.