Monday, 30 December 2013


Yes, this is another of those 'best products of 2013' blog posts. No, I will not apologise for being a blogger cliché. If you know anything about me, you know I love lists so this is right up my alley. Hence, I present to you an assortment of products that I came to know and love in this past year.

I only own the original Naked palette, although I'm now sorely tempted by the Naked 3. I have a modest collection of eyeshadow palettes but the original Naked is always the first one I reach for. For someone with green(ish-blue) eyes, the warm toned colours really suit me. Whenever I travel, this is all the eyeshadow I bring with me. If I could recommend a palette to anyone, it would definitely be this one.

My hair is a nightmare. It's long, dry, curly, prone to frizz, and thick. I'm constantly looking for ways to tame it. This is one product that does the trick. I run a few spritzes through wet hair then scrunch it and it stops my hair looking and feeling like straw. Possibly not a good bet for those with fine hair, but my hair needs all the help it can get and this helps along the way.

My skin also suffers with dryness. In the winter I'm prone to sore, itchy skin that feels tight and dried out. It's not the best. Most body moisturisers just don't cut it and leave my skin feeling parched again a few hours after application. The only thing I've found that helps combat my winter dryness is The Body Shop's body butter range. My personal favourite scents are Brazil Nut and Satsuma. 

I used to only wear highlighter on special occasions, or when I could be bothered but recently I've been wearing it most days. Again, it's probably a dry skin thing. I hate a matte face. It just draws attention to dry patches. I've tried several highlighters in various forms, creams, powders, etc. This is my favourite. It blends like a dream and you don't end up looking like a disco ball after applying it.

This is a recent addition to my vampy lipstick collection (I should probably do an updated collection post at some point). I've long been a fan of Rimmel lipsticks. They apply and last well, and they're super cheap. 'Starry Eyed' has been my go-to daytime dark lip of late. Definitely a good one to try out if you're new to the dark lip thing, or want something more everyday appropriate.

I mentioned this in my skincare post a while back, but it's still going strong. I'd recommend going and reading that post for more information but basically, it keeps what minimal breakouts I experienced at bay and helps reduce the appearance of pores. It also lasts ages too. I've used mine every day for around 6 months and there's still plenty left in the bottle.

I'd wanted this for years and finally received it as a gift for my 21st birthday, back in September. It's a really interesting, androgynous scent. With perfumes, I like intense, unique scents. Nothing that smells like cupcakes or flowers, thank you. It's definitely one to go and smell for yourself. I always get compliments when I wear this.

Most bloggers worth their salt will likely have heard of this neutral blush. I picked it up on a trip to the US this year and found that it did indeed live up to the hype. If I can't decide what blush to wear, I always end up going for this.  Again, another product I always pack in my travel make-up bag. 

Saturday, 28 December 2013

OUTFIT | #184

top, boots: River Island; jeans: Topshop

The lighting in my room is super weird in the mornings and it makes taking pictures kind of a nightmare. In half the shots I took, I didn't even have a face because the sun was so bright. So excuse the bizarre light and how it's making my hair look like it's glowing. My hair and I aren't currently getting along anyway. I'm around 99% sure I'm going to chop it off soon and go for the long bob. I'm 21, the long hair's getting old. It makes me feel like I'm still trying to be a teenager. I hated my teen years, I'm ready to start looking like a woman in her early twenties. Plus it takes up way too much of my damn time to look after it properly. Over it.

This is my 'gonna go spend hours and hours in the library' outfit. Just because it's Christmas break doesn't mean I get to lounge about eating selection boxes and watching films all the time, sadly. Comfort was the aim of the game so I wore this incredibly baggy shirt I found in River Island recently. I foresee us having a long and successful relationship involving many late nights in the library. I was concerned it would look a bit odd on me because baggy tops like this tend to only suit flat-chested girls. When you add boobs and flowy material, it doesn't always work out but I think it works. Is it flattering? Not especially, but I wasn't really going for that look anyway. And yes, I am wearing a new pair of black boots. It's a sickness.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013


 late nights in the library; all black everything; getting ready for evening out
ready for a night out on the town; lunchtime cocktails; hot baths and Black Books

December has been an odd mixture of end of semester excursions and festivities with uni friends, general Christmas preparation, and toiling over essays and my dissertation. Trying to strike a balance hasn't always been the easiest thing but I'm doing my best. Currently I'm back at my mum's for a week or so to celebrate Christmas with family, eat a lot of food, and generally be merry. Then I'll be back and forth between hiding myself away in the library to work all day, and heading off to visit various friends across the country. I hope everyone else is treating themselves well and enjoying the holiday season. 

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram for more of what I get up to during winter break.

Sunday, 22 December 2013

OUTFIT | #183

top: Primark; skirt: American Apparel; shoes: Converse

I don't think I've ever consistently featured so much Primark on my blog. Ever. In the past, I've steered very clear of Primark. I find it too busy and too messy for clothes I wouldn't wear anyway. Lately they've definitely stepped up to the plate though and had some decent offerings in store. I still have to find a quieter period to pop in, or I get too stressed out and walk straight out. But that's just my personal aversion to mess and crowds talking.

There's something incredibly festive about velvet to me. I wore this to another Christmassy shindig. It's so warm and always a conversation starter when people realise how soft it is. Yes, you can stroke my t-shirt. No, that's not strange at all... I think I'll be pretty sad when the holiday season is over. I love any excuse to get all my friends together, eat food, and drink a lot of wine while wearing our favourite clothes. Christmas is an especially good time of year for that. I guess that's why people complain about the January blues after the holiday excitement comedown.

Thursday, 19 December 2013

OUTFIT | #182

top: Primark; scarf: H&M; skirt: Topshop; shoes: Converse

Another day, another crop top. This is another of those ridiculously cheap Primark crop tops I mentioned in my previous post. Nearly identical to the last one, except this has a high neck. Will I ever wear anything other than black crop tops again? Who knows. Watch this space. I threw this outfit on in a hurry and spent the whole day feeling like I was in that film The Craft. Which is no bad thing, in my humble opinion.

I wore this on a particularly busy day, when I had to rush to work to sort some things out before meeting friends for lunch and doing some last minute Christmas shopping. Say what you will about crop tops, but I love them and with something high-waisted on the bottom, I never feel cold. Someone asked me the other day to feature 'functional outfits' on my blog. Pieces to layer, what to wear on really cold days, etc. But that's basically what I already do. This is exactly the stuff I wear on really cold days. Every day here is really cold. I would never walk around feeling cold just because I liked an outfit. Who has time for that?

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

OUTFIT | #181

top: Primark; skirt: River Island; shoes: New Look; necklace: ASOS

It's the time of semester when everyone's going on one last hurrah before people head home for the winter break. One night last week, I went on a night out with some of my nearest and dearest uni friends and fancied a new outfit for the occasion. I didn't want to spend loads of money though. I am a poor student, after all. In the end, I bought a new top and skirt for under £20. A successful effort, if you ask me. 

The skirt was a bit 'out there' for someone who tends to favour the miniskirt, like myself. Real talk: I think my legs are one of my best features and I like to display them accordingly.  The split in the side made me feel less like a demure grandmother though. Plus the fact that it was super sparkly and festive. Originally £30, reduced to £15, it was a done deal. The crop top was a Primark job. At £2, I stocked up on every style and colour they had to offer in the store. We all know how much I enjoy a good crop top.

Thursday, 12 December 2013


Christmas shopping ultimately leads to making a few sneaky purchases for yourself along the way, as we all know. My present shopping is nearly finished now but along the way, I couldn't resist purchasing a few items from Sleek as a gift for myself. I'd had my eye on them for a while and since it's deadline week for me, I figured a treat might be a good incentive to crack this final project out.

Sleek Blush By 3 'Sweet Cheeks'
I believe this blush palette came out with one of Sleek's collections that I didn't pay much attention to. These palettes always catch my eye in stores though, and I liked this one a lot in particular. I have a lot of peach blushes and not enough pink tones so this offers a lot of colours I don't already own. There's a nice mix of brights and neutrals, mattes and shimmers, powders and creams, all that good stuff. I can't speak for longevity just yet but I have other Sleek blushes and they're always very pigmented and long-lasting, in my experience.

Sleek Face Contour Kit 'Light'
This is a product I've seen recommended countless times on YouTube. It tends to be difficult to find in stores by me, so when I ordered a few things online I knew I had to finally get this for myself. I'm a big fan of contouring, even in my everyday make up, so I'm always in the market to try a new contour powder. Plus the highlighter this comes with is lovely too. I have really dry skin so I avoid the matte look at all costs. Highlighter is a must. Plus it should be a great product to bring with me when travelling - having two-in-one is always dead handy.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

WISHLIST | Shoes Please

1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Shoes are my downfall. I have so many pairs, yet never enough. And a lot of the pairs I already own look really alike. It's a sickness. I can't go anywhere without falling in love with yet another pair of black ankle boots. These are some shoes I've had my eye on more recently. River Island are tempting me like no other currently. Their selection of ankle boots is impeccable. Basically, I want them all. It was difficult to narrow it down to merely two pairs to feature on this wishlist.

Another great shoe love of mine is the heel. I always wear heels on a night out. I think the gene that makes people's feet hurt after wearing heels all night skipped me, because I always soldier on. I'll run in them, I'll dance in them until the wee hours, you will not see me walking home with my shoes in one hand. I am a high heels trooper. This purple and black Topshop pair are calling to me in particular. I'm not usually one for a stiletto heel but for these I can make an exception. 

The New Balance look somewhat out of place amidst all these heels, but I've wanted a pair for a while now. I wear trainers a lot during the day, with all variety of outfits. I walk a lot and I spend hours on my feet at work so comfort is key. Plus there's something about my signature black paired with turquoise that is incredibly appealing to me.

Friday, 6 December 2013

OUTFIT | #180

dress: Miss Selfridge; clutch: H&M; shoes: BCBGeneration

Props to my housemate for snapping these pictures 5 minutes before we ran out the door. I so rarely manage to get ready in time to take pictures of what I wear on a night out, but this dress was too good not to document. I went to the student media ball at my university this week. I love a good formal affair and excuse to wear all my best rags. I knew this dress was for me the moment I spotted it in Miss Selfridge a few months ago. Even the girls in the shop said they were all obsessed with it. It's an absolute corker. I kept trying it on and ending up sitting about watching TV in it because I wouldn't want to take it off. 

Sequins aren't usually my thing, but black and form-fitting is so it worked. I didn't manage to get a picture but it's lower in the back which is a nice touch. I am in desperate need of a good new clutch though. My reliable old black number finally bit the dust a few weeks ago and I like having the option of more than one bag to choose from on a night out. Definitely an item that's going on my shopping list for future purchase.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

OUTFIT | #179

jumper: Tommy Hilfiger; skirt: J. Crew; boots: H&M

This is possibly my favourite jumper I've ever owned. When I moved back to uni, I foolishly left it at my mum's house and have felt the sting of its absence ever since. In all serious though, it was really bloody annoying. I kept thinking of outfits I wanted to wear with it and then remembering I didn't have it. I went home last weekend and the first thing I did was make sure I packed this jumper securely in my bag. Reunited at last. I've worn it nearly every day since. Hopefully we won't be parted again anytime soon. 

Special mention here to my sister, since this jumper was originally hers before I stole it. Or she gave it to me, one or the other. It certainly wouldn't be the first time I've coveted her knitwear. I've got my eye on a black and cream striped number in her wardrobe currently. Watch out, sis. That one might 'accidentally' end up in my bag after I come home for Christmas.

Monday, 2 December 2013

OUTFIT | #178

jumper, boots: Topshop; skirt: H&M; bag: Rebecca Minkoff

I wore this out for dinner and drinks with some friends last week. I'd been in the library all day, in a perfectly acceptable outfit, but decided to change anyway. Sitting in silence amongst the stacks all day left me feeling rather dull. Hence the big peach jumper. That thing is a god-send on cold nights. I have never encountered a warmer item of knitwear. I can even get away with a lighter jacket when I wear this jumper. It's that warm. Since my criteria for winter outfits is basically: looks good, won't leave me frozen to death - it fits the bill.

I don't often feature the bag I use in outfit posts. Mostly because on a day-to-day basis, I just use my Fjallraven Kanken 24/7. I'm rarely without it. On the rare occasion I do ditch the backpack, I've been reaching for smaller bags lately. For my 21st I got given a Rebecca Minkoff Mini M.A.C. and it's the perfect size for running quick errands or an evening out. Not so small that I have to sacrifice bringing certain things with me, but still sleek and unobtrusive. For someone who's always been into big bags, it works surprisingly well for me.