Friday, 31 August 2012

Mini shopping Haul: August 2012


I am a complete sucker for chemists/drug stores like Superdrug, Boots, Savers etc I am yet to walk past one without going in, it’s like an addiction. I will have to go into all of them (drives my mates crazy as they think one is the same as the next-well their wrong) I guess you can call me a chemist whore,lol I will however often feel like a cheat as I parade my shopping bags full of goodies from their rival stores,lol This month was no exception. I just had to pay Superdrug and Boots a visit. I have recently discovered Soap and Glory and am in love, I can’t wait for their Christmas gift boxes. I have very bad dark patches under my eyes and have had my eye on their Kick-Ass Concealer for quite some time and as Boots were doing this for £3 off meaning it was reduced to £7 I thought it would be rude not too – expect a review on this at some stage. Whilst in boots I thought I would pick up the Real Techniques Stippling Brush by Samantha Chapman as I am in need of a new beauty blender but thought I would give this a go and also just to see what all the fuss was about. I will try this out when applying my makeup later today so expect a review in the next week or so.
 

From Superdrug I picked up two boxes of my all time favourite tinted moisturiser- Nivea Daily Essentials Tinted Day Moisturiser as it was less than half price (less than two quid a box- bargain) and I am very tempted to pick up a few more boxes later today seeing as its on offer.  I have also informed my mate who wears this now thanks to moi about this offer and she has stocked up on 6 boxes,lol I have been using Soap and Glory’s Righteous Body Butter Body Lotion as my daily moisturiser and I am loving it as it leaves me feeling silky smooth but I’m scared at how much I’m getting though and wanted a cheaper alternative to use at night, so I thought I would pick this one up from Nivea as it was on offer and smells lovely like all their products. Whilst this product smells lovely and leaves me feeling nice and soft for a number of hours I don’t feel  that it is anything special and certainly don’t think that it does what it claims to on the bottle (meant to lock in moisture for 24hrs) and therefore I will not be repurchasing. Any recommendations on a good moisturising body lotion that is under a fiver would be greatly appreciated. I also picked up Superdrug’s own brand of Coconut Oil which is actually a solid until you rub it within your palms. This can be used on both body and hair. I have yet to try in on my hair but use it as a barrier when applying my gradual tan. I use this on my elbows, wrists, knees and feet. It works great.
 Whilst in Superdrug I thought I would stock up on some Batiste Dry Shampoo as let’s face it a girl can never have too many dry shampoos. I opted for the tropical one in large as I love the smell of coconut (yum) as this stuff is great for when I want to get an extra day out of my hair, I mainly use this one for updos. I also got the tinted one which I use more for when I want an extra day out of my hair and I’m leaving it down, it means there will be no risk of the tell-tale grey tinge to my hair from the dry shampoo. I already have the XXL one which I use to add volume for nights out but unfortunately Superdrug were out of it, otherwise I would have picked that one up too, I might see if it’s in my local Superdrug later today.
 
I can never shop in Primark without picking up a tanning mitt, its one thing I can never have too many of. I have different tanning mitts for different types of tan and I use these ones from Primark for applying my gradual tanner and to apply Sally Hansen leg makeup to my legs for days/nights when I have the pins on show. At £2 you can’t go wrong. I was out of face wipes so thought I would pick these up. I rarely use wipes to take my makeup off and would instead use them to wipe my hands when doing my makeup. These wipes are ok for hands but I tried them last night on removing my makeup and they weren’t very good so wouldn’t recommend them as a makeup remover but they work fine for what I originally bought them for-hand wipes. The wipes were £1 for a pack of two.

 
I thought I done very well on the clothes front as I spent very little, mainly due to not getting to look around the shops properly due to my mate having to be at work. However I managed to pick up some essentials. As said before I LOVE studs, I just had to have this studded clutch from Primark (I actually got the last one) it was £6 which I thought was just brilliant and far nicer than ones I have seen in other shops such as New Look for double the price. On Tuesday I went to the cinema to see The Watch (Vince Vaughn-hubba hubba) and fell head over shit on the way home and ruined my favourite jeans (sad face) so I had to nip into Dorothy Perkins and replace them. They are from the super stretch skinny jean range. I thought I would pick up a red pair too to add a little pajaz to my winter wardrobe. However due to be rushed I picked the red ones up in the wrong range and will return them later today and get the red super stretch super skinny ones.
 

I’m a girl who loves her shoes; my daytime look will nearly always consist of some sort of a pump. When I saw these I just had to have them. They are so pretty. They were £10 from Primark. I needed new slippers and just had to have these cat ones when I saw them. They are soooo comfy, I actually walked around Primark with my hands in them they were that soft. They were £3 and I will defo be buying more pairs next time I’m in Primark.
their grrrrreat ;)
 So that was my little haul this week, Have you bought anything nice recently?

xKx

Thursday, 23 August 2012

My tips for those going to University for the first time.


 
I am a recent graduate [for the second time] who has completed two degrees which meant that I had two first time experiences at University as my degrees were in two different locations.  For me I was actually more nervous the second time around as I had spent three years at my first university where I had made wonderful friends and made many unforgettable memories. I was conscious that I would be a lot older than those living in halls second time around and worried that my experience second time around  wouldn’t match up to my first. I shouldn’t have been worried as I had a great time and have made many friends and created lots more unforgettable memories. For me both experiences were completely different, which is only natural as I had done a lot of growing up throughout my first degree and entered my second degree more grown up and more focused on my degree as I was very focused on starting my desired career. So as the new batch of students are getting ready to begin another chapter in their lives by going to university I thought I would share some helpful tips that will hopefully prove useful to some of you reading this. So grab yourself a cuppa and enjoy as this post is gonna be a long one.

 

Making Friends And Trying New Things:

First off, fear not. You may feel like you will never make friends and may fear that you will remain alone-this will not happen, after all we are all the makers of our own destiny. This feeling may be more evident in those who didn’t have a great experience at school/college or who may be moving to a university where none of their friends are going. When going to university for the first time I didn’t know a soul and tbh now I’m kind of glad I didn’t as I found that my friends who moved away together clung together and didn’t make as many ‘new’ friends. It is important to remember that everyone is in the same position as yourself and will be having the same worries as you. I’ll never forget saying goodbye to my family and closing the door behind them and looking around at the three strange faces looking back at me and thinking ‘oh crap.’ On first impressions none of the girls looked like my type and I thought I wouldn’t get on with them, how wrong was I. I am still very good friends with them to this day and even lived with one of them for three years. We were sat in our kitchen on the first night feeling slightly awkward when I came up with the idea of knocking on everyone’s door to say hello and introduce ourselves-best thing we could have done as we got to meet others from our courses and arranged to meet and walk to class together for the first day. The knocking on doors resulted in a huge party in ours where we stayed up until 6am having ‘the crack’ as we say here, and the rest in history. So don’t be afraid to be bashful, go knock on doors and introduce yourself.  Also another way to meet people is freshers week, it’s time to step out of your comfort zone and join in the activities offered. I strongly recommend trying new things as it’s a fun way to meet new people; I joined in the hip hop dancing, belly dancing and fencing clubs and had an absolute ball even though I was rubbish at all three.
 

Shopping And Money:

Don’t go mad on buying things for the house. Wait until you see what others have brought with them and they you can all chip in and get the rest or divide it amongst you on who buys what. Buy cheap as you don’t want to spend lots on stuff in case it gets ruined. There are always cheap household stuff in September and October as shops purposely aim their market at students around this time of year. I strongly suggest that you invest in a decent clothes rack for drying your clothes in your room as this will last you throughout your whole time at university and beyond. Ear plugs are also handy for those evenings where you want to block out noise. A printer is also a good investment as you will save so much more money in the long run as University can charge 5p for a sheet of paper and there are always queue’s at the printer. Argos always do good printer deals for around 25-30quid.

Clothes wise, I wouldn’t suggest rushing out and buying loads of clothes as in early October [normally when loans are in] many shops like DV8, Topshop, New Look etc will offer 15% and 20% student discount. Even keep your eyes peeled for student discounts in stores such as River Island that normally don’t offer discount as they will normally have a weekend where they will offer student discount, they will time this for when loan payments are in. So save your pennies for then. I also recommend that you don’t go mad on your loan. Remember its real money that you will have to pay back so make it stretch as nothing worse than having no money and all your friends are off out doing fun things.

 I recommend that you bring clothes that are easily washed and dried. Some clothes for both day and night. It would be good to have lots of basics that can be dressed up or down. Plain tops are great for this and mean that you can create lots of different looks without looking like your wearing the same thing all the time. I would also recommend you bring some sport/gym gear for activities that you may partake in. Bring any Halloween costumes or fancy dress outfits that you own as there will be many themed nights out. Popular ones are school discos, beach parties, pub golf, tennis hoes and pros and Greek themes. Flip-flops are also great to bring as it’s more than likely you will have a communal shower. Also a hanging shower caddy is great as you can take it to the shower with you to carry all your essentials in. Another alterative if the shower is only used by a small number of people is to buy a cheap plastic drawer set or vegetable rack to store your shower stuff on. Each person can take a shelf or drawer to keep their stuff in. I also recommend that you bring a something to keep your dirty washing in as you may have to use communal washer and dryers and want something to carrying your washing in.  I would suggest for those who will have communal bills such as electric or heating bills to divide the bills equally. I wouldn’t recommend taking it turns to pay the bills as I have seen this cause arguments so it’s probably best to all put a fiver in a kitty every month etc to pay for bills. It’s probably also worth buying some food items together such as basics like milk, bread, butter etc as fridge space is limited and its pointless to  have four loaves of bread for four people. Also take full advantage of your student card for example if you produce your student card in McDonalds when buying a meal you can get a free McFlurry, cheese/hamburger or fries.
 

Safety:

Now onto safety, prepare for a lecture. Most universities would provide students with welcome packs where there will be lots of information-do read this, there are usually free condoms contained within this pack and they are often hanged out during fresher week. I would suggest that you keep a stash of condoms in your room and some in your handbag in case you find yourself in that situation-after all its better to be safe than sorry. Please be drink smart, do not get yourself in risky situations and do not wander off drunk alone as you are only making yourself more vulnerable. Personal alarms are often handed out in fresher’s week, grab yourself one and carry it in your bag. They are small and take up little room in your bag but could save you from an awful situation. Always make sure someone knows where you are going and when you should be expected to return. I also strongly recommend keeping money in your phone and keeping your phone charged.

 

Other tips:

You may not get on with everyone you meet but the good thing is unlike school you are not forced to spend all your time with those whose company you don’t particularly enjoy. A top tip I have is to always keep a spare loo roll hidden in your room. Believe me a time may come where you will need it. For those who worry about using shared loos especially where #2’s are concerned I would suggest bringing incense sticks with u to the toilet and light it to well you know,lol. Just remember to blow it out and take it back to your room with you if you don’t want anyone to know what you’ve been doing. Compile a first aid kit with plasters, Imodium, headache tablets etc as this kit will come in handy. Do gather up taxi numbers and take away menus and pin them to a board or the fridge. If in a new area I strongly recommend that you put a few taxi numbers in your phone in case you ever get stuck. It may be a good idea to have an emergency taxi fund hidden in the flat in case you get stuck and need a taxi home but have no money in your purse. Means you can run to the flat/house and get the fare from the kitty-just remember to replace any money you take out. Any snacks and drinks you do not want to risk getting eaten or drunk by others especially by those who get a dose of the munchies after a night out or want to party on I would suggest keeping this in your room. I also suggest locking your bedroom door. There will often be parties where there will be ‘randomers’ if you want to prevent your stuff being stolen then lock your room door-simples. I would also suggest making up house rules once you get to know each other better and regular house meetings is a good way to air any concerns and prevent avoidable bitching sessions or bust ups. To avoid arguments it would also be a good idea to draw up a cleaning rota. I would also suggest that you learn how to wash and iron and get someone to show you how to cook a few meals if you don’t already know how to.
 

Finally do try and stay on top of your university work and attend class. Make sure you look into what classes are compulsory as you don’t want your university experience to end due to missing compulsory classes. After all you have put the hard work in to get here. If you are struggling with university work then speak up. Go and speak with a lecturer after all that’s what they are there for. But you are seen as an adult now as are expected to speak up about such things whereas in school the teachers came to you if they thought something was up. If you are struggling with any other problems such as relationships, sexual health, money etc there are support systems in University to help you, no one will want you to struggle.
 

Finally enjoy every minute as take it from me the time flies. So buckle up and enjoy the journey.

I hope this was helpful.

xKx

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

My Current Favourites: August


 
My Current Favourite TV programme: Pretty Little Liars. Four friends band together against an anonymous foe who threatens to reveal their darkest secrets, whilst unravelling the mystery of the murder of their best friend.’I have been addicted to this programme for ages. Love the fashion and the twists and turns that occur in every episode...oh and the eye candy. Defo one to watch.
My Current Favourite Song: I have been adding a lot of music to my iPod of late especially ones from when I was growing up. One that I can’t seem to get enough of atm is R Kelly Bump and Grind-TUNE!!!
My Current Favourite Blog: Princess and the Pea. I recently stumbled across this blog and just love the girl’s style. I defo have style envy and shall be taking some style tips from this blogger.
My Current Favourite You Tube Channel: thesparkleicious, I think Avia’s You Tube videos are great as she gives her honest opinion and does really good informative in-depth reviews. I love to see on my feed that she has uploaded a new video. Avia also has a blog [click here].
My Current Favourite Shop: I was never really that fussed on H&M but lately I have found a good few wardrobe staples in store and have found myself not being able to pass by the shop without popping in for a nose and more often than not I come out with a shopping bag.
My Current Favourite Snack: Tesco’s Cheese Savouries Snacks for 90p. If you like KP’s min cheddar biscuits you will love these. I can’t stop eating them-yummy.
My Current Favourite Fake Tan: Garnier Summerbody in Deep. I love the stuff. See here for my review.
My Current Favourite Shampoo: Henara Shampoo for dark hair. Leaves my hair so shiny and smells amazing. However you could defo need to use a conditioner with this shampoo, luckily there is a matching conditioner.
My Current Favourite Body Wash/Bubble Bath: Dove Silk Glow, it smells lovely and lingers for a while on my skin. I would wear this scent as a perfume if it were to be made into one.
My Current Favourite Body Scrub: Soap and Glory Flake Away. Heavenly smell and does its job-what more could you want.
My Current Favourite Perfume: Alien by Thierry Mugler. Very strong so only need a little, too much and you’re in headache territory, it’s my signature scent and ill always wear it on a night out. I often get asked what the lovely smell is and I have had friends buy the perfume after smelling it off me.
My Current Favourite Nail Polish: Models Own Bubblegum, it’s almost neon pink and looks lovely especially on my tootsies.
My Current Favourite Foundation: Nivea tinted moisturiser. It’s cheap (often on offer for £2), looks good and I’ve received many a complement when wearing it.
My Current Favourite Concealer: Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection Concealer. Sadly I have very dark under eyes and this helps me look a little more alive.
My Current Favourite Mascara: Benefit They’re Real. I first got this as a Christmas present and wow what can I say. For me this mascara works wonders. I can’t see myself ever finding another mascara that matches up to this. The only mascara that ever came close is YSL’s mascara however it doesn’t last long as the wand is rubbish so this mascara by Benefit is my number one.
My Current Favourite Blusher: MUA’s Blusher for £1 in shade 5. Looks brighter than it is, but gives a lovely rosey glow.
My Current Favourite Lipgloss: 17 Ultimate Volume Lip Gloss in very berry. Such vibrant colour and stays on well. My go to lip colour for a night out.
My Current Favourite Lipstick: MUA’s lipstick in shade 3, perfect for daytime. See here for my review.
My Current Favourite Makeup Remover:Garnier 2 in 1 eye and face makeup remover. This stuff is amazing at removing my makeup, even stubborn eye makeup. It also leaves my skin feeling so soft that I can’t help stroking my face. Also I just saw today that Superdrug is doing two of these for £3.99 so I may stock up.
My Current Favourite Method Of Hair Removal: My Panasonic Wet/Dry Epilator. I am a big fan of epilating and this one helps keep me fuzz free and lasts longer than shaving and is cheaper than waxing.
 
What are your current favs?
Thanks for reading.
xKx

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

August Wish-list: If I had £100 what would I spend it on?

Well I could and would quite happily spend £100, in fact there is a lot I would like to buy at the minute that totals more than £100 [winter boots, leather jacket, perfume etc believe me the list is long and my mum would probably say its endless]. Sadly for me I am strapped for cash atm as iv just forked out a small fortune on car insurance so I can only day dream about what I’d actually spend the money on [well for now-payday at the end of the month, whoop whoop] so below are the things I would buy if I was handed £100 right this very minute.



1.Soap and Glory Body Puff £3.50 from Boots 2.Nivea Tinted Moisturiser£3.65 from Superdrug 3.Demin Shirt £14.99 Online 4.River Island Jacket £55 5.Soap and Glory Kick Ass Concealer £7 from Boots 6. Tommy Tommy Hilfiger Loud Perfune £9.99 Semi Chem 7. Garnier Summer Body Gradual Tan £2.50 from Tesco 8. Studded Collar Brooch £2.99 From Ebay.
Grand Total = £99.62
 
Recently I bought Soap and Glory’s travel size flake away after it was recommended by another blogger well let’s just say that I’ve fallen in love. I think it’s brilliant at removing old fake tan and the smell was just divine, I loved how it lingered on my skin. Boots were doing a 3-for-2 offer on some of their Soap and Glory products so I put an order in which is due to arrive this Friday [Yay] for the full size flake away, their pink perfume and the righteous butter body lotion [I will review these of course-all in due course]. So I really wanted to try their kick ass concealer but it wasn’t included in the 3-for-2 offer, instead it had £3 off, sadly I did not have enough pennies due to too many bills needing paid, so I am hoping to get this product next month. I use a large blue shower puff daily and think it’s great for lathering up my shower gels, I love anything pink and would love this S&G body puff, I think it would look well in my shower. I use Niveas tinted moisturiser instead of foundation, I just love it and have received many complements on my makeup since I started using it, I’m running low on it atm and need to stock up, likewise with my Garnier gradual tan so realistically I would include these essentials in my shopping cart if I were given £100. I have wanted a denim shirt for some time; I think it is a very versatile piece which can be worn on its own or over things. I would add a little something extra to it by adding the studded brooch. I have also had my eye on a khaki jacket with leather sleeves since I saw Louise from MIC wearing one, I saw this jacket in River Island and thought it was reasonably priced[better start saving]. Finally I am very into perfumes atm and smelt this Tommy Hilfiger perfume off my friend, she informed me that it was on sale in Semi Chem for a tenner-lets hope it still is as cheap come payday at the end of the month.




What would you buy with £100 if you were handed it for nothing?
Thanks for reading,

xKx

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Luxe for Less: Shenae Grimes


I love when magazines do a real vs steal section and decided to do my own whilst following on with the studded ankle boots theme.

I love Shenae Grimes effortlessly cool style. I think she always looks well put together without looking ‘too try hard.’  For those that don’t know who Shenae Grimes is, she is a Canadian actress who currently plays the role of Annie Wilson on 90210.

When googling the Chloe Susanne Studded Ankle Boots I came across Shenae wearing the following outfit.  
1. Alice & Olivia leather top £264, 2. Alice & Olivia cropped print trousers £87, 3. Chloe Black Studded Susanne Studded Ankle Boots £860
 I thought this outfit was very on trend and had a biker edge to it yet remaining girly at the same time. This is an outfit I could see myself wearing and so I thought I would see if I could find a similar outfit for a fraction of the price.

1. H&M printed trousers £24.99, 2. Matalan printed trousers [sale]£11, 3. Boohoo printed trousers £20, 4. Topshop leather front t-shirt [sale]£15, 5. Dorethy Perkins leather top sold on Ebay for £27.99, 6. Office Nighthawk ankle boots £80, 7. Schuh Bob ankle boots £80

What do you think of this outfit, would you wear it?
Thanks for reading,
xKx

Luxe for Less: Chloe Susanna Studded Ankle Boots Dupe


Eek I’m tres excited for my new purchase and cannot wait until its arrival, so whilst I’m impatiently waiting on my postman to deliver my new boots I thought I would write a post about them-I am of course talking about the Schuh ‘Bob’ Studded Ankle Boot’s which are exactly the same as the Office Nighthawk ankle boots only the Schuh version has the Blink logo on them.


Can be bought here for £80


Ebay photos of actual boot

 
These boots are of course a dupe for the Chloe Susanna Studded Ankle Boots which were made popular back in 2008 by celebrities such as Kate Bosworth and Sienna Miller. I always wished that I had these boots but unfortunately do not have that kind of money and have thus been on the look out for a good dupe of these boots. Hence my excitement at discovering recently that they were more than one dupe of these boots available on the high-street.



Chloe Susanna Studded Ankle Boots
Schuh 'BOB' Studded Ankle boot


Office 'Nighthawk' Studded Ankle Boot 


 
I umed and awed over the office version for ages but didn’t have £104 spare to spend on them. I would try them on each time I was in the shop [I’m sure the shop assistant was sick of me trying and not buying,lol] and so I decided I would save up for them. Around a month after deciding to save for them I discovered that Schuh had brought out a pair named ‘bob’ which are branded by Blink for £80. All sounds a bit confusing, but word on the street is that they are in fact the same boot. From closer inspection I would say that they are with the only difference being that the Schuh version has a small logo on the side.  I am however happy to report that I managed to grab myself a little bargain and got the Schuh ‘Bob’ ankle boots brand new on ebay for £68.50 as someone was selling them due to them not suiting them and having exceeded the return date of their receipt. So bonus for me-yaay!!!
Now just one question remains: what do I wear with these boots?
As you may have gathered from previous blog posts I love all things studded. I would describe my style as girly with a slight grungier edge to it.  For everyday casual wear you will probably find me in a blouse of some sort, a blazer, skinnies and studded pumps. I am very much a flats girl by day and thought these boots could add a bit of edge to my wardrobe for autumn/winter. Below I have gathered some inspiration on what I could wear these boots with.
 



What do you think of these boots and what would you wear with them?
Thanks for reading,
xKx

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Whats wrong with imprefections? The dangers of the media on our body image.


Recently whilst trawling through facebook I noticed that one of my friends had very un-natural looking pictures of herself -and by unnatural I mean perfectly flawless pictures where she has no evident freckles on her face. Upon closer inspection they looked airbrushed.  I commented on the pictures stating that the pictures looked flawless to which she replied that she had used a new software on them to give them that airbrushed look. She exclaimed that this is something that a lot of her friends are doing as they don’t like how they look in their pictures and this way they can air out any signs of imperfections-in my friends case her freckles [which I actually think are lovely and are unique to her]. I was astonished to find that these pictures had actually received loads more complements from others compared to her regular picture postings.

This really got me thinking; are we a nation so obsessed with how we look that we will attempt to attain the impossible by trying to look or at least fool others into thinking we look as perfect as those on magazine covers. When we all know deep down that those in magazines look nothing like their pictures in real life. This made me reflect on my feelings from watching a documentary back in 2008 on the subject of airbrushing. From watching Alesha Dixon’s ‘Look But Don't Touch’ documentary when it first aired back in 2008 [can be watched here] I never thought I was really influenced by the images surrounding me every day.  I just thought that I saw these images an admired them but knew they weren’t real and that was that. Watching Alesha’s documentary got me thinking and sadly I was wrong, these images had made more of an impression on me and how I viewed my body than I initially thought.
Airbrushed photos of Jessica Alba and Sarah Jessica Parker

When thinking about it and being truly honest with myself I subconsciously compared myself to these images and have done so since I first started buying magazines at the tender age of 13.  I am a small size 12 at 5foot 6.5inches, and I've always felt that I should be smaller in both clothes size and height. I have small boobs yet I have hips which to me seemed out of proportion. I have poker straight hair that I always felt should be voluminous, after all that all I ever see in advertisements. I have cellulite on my bum and thighs and visible veins on my legs which I always felt were grotesque and unnatural.  I don't have high cheekbones; I've always felt that I should. I don’t have a perfect petite straight nose, hell I even have one eye bigger than the other, in my eyes I was far from beautiful as I looked so different from the images that were being presented to me. The documentary made me question whether it is out personal preference that I want bigger boobs, smaller thighs, voluminous hair etc or is it because I’ve grown up surrounded by pictures of perfection that has influenced me into wanting to look a certain way.

As a tall[ish], small chested girl I admired the likes of Sienna Miller and Kiera Knightly as they are known for their small chests but are still considered beautiful. This is why pictures like those below really bother me, why is there a need to digitally enhance their busts. Are they trying to give us the message that there is something unattractive about smaller boobs? No wonder I had major body issues growing up.



Kiera Knightly Bust Enhanced
 Women and young girls are forever comparing themselves to women in the media. Today, we can’t go anywhere without seeing images of perfection plastered everywhere, telling us what we should be, how we should look etc. TBH I’m sick of it. Women and young girls just like me strive to gain these unattainable bodies and unfortunately too often when these images are not achieved through healthy forms of exercise etc some people start to take alternative measures often resulting in people taking drastic measures thus putting their health at risk. Just take Hedi Montag for example she underwent 10 procedures in one day putting her life in jeopardy-yet she is still open to having more surgery until she feels she has reached ‘perfection.’ 
Hedi Montag before and after.
 It's honestly  no surprise that many young girls/women [and boys/men may I add] these days are already considering plastic surgery, I was horrified to hear that Sarah Burge gave her young daughter Poppy £8,000 worth of vouchers to spend on plastic surgery for her EIGTH birthday!!! You can see her interview on this morning below;

Research has shown that exposure to false, airbrushed pictures of celebrities is linked to depression, low self-esteem, and the development of eating disorders. It is believed that one in every one hundred teenage girls may develop an eating disorder. This is an alarmingly high number. I was quite frankly relieved when I saw that the likes of Britney Spears, Anne Lynn McCord and Kim Kardashian had released untouched pictures of themselves. I felt nothing but pure admiration for these girls and I just wish that more of those in the media lime light would do so.



[L-R] Britney Spears before and after, Anne Lynn McCord touched photo and no makeup photo, Kim Kardashian before and after, Kin Kardashian psoriasis picture.Note to self they all look beautiful with their imperfections!!!


It’s sad to say that 100% of fashion magazines today use digitally retouched pictures. Yes I am aware that there's a difference between fashion magazines such as Vogue and beauty companies such as Dove. Setting aside the fact that they are different products, they are both aimed at very different audiences.  Realistically would there even be high end fashion magazines like Vogue anymore if they used natural pictures? Now I’m not totally against all airbrushing but I feel that magazines have gone overboard. I personally would find it refreshing to buy a magazine that showcased people’s imperfections, after all models are just like us-they do have bad hair and skin days. So why not show us that we are more like them than we think? Take Dove’s advertisement campaign where real woman are used-has it hindered me from buying their product? Hell no, in fact it has probably encouraged me to try more of their products. I just wish more companies would follow in their direction.
Dove Real Women Campaign


However I Honestly don’t see airbrushing going anywhere in the near future so instead I think it would be nice to look at adverts’ and see "this picture has been retouched" at the bottom just like they now do with mascara adverts where they have to say if the eyelashes have been digitally enhanced or lash inserts used- It would be a nice little reminder for all of us out there looking at these images and would hopefully hone home that these pictures are not ‘real’.

Always remember that “To wish you were someone else is to waste the person you are.”- Unknown.

Thanks for reading,

xKx


Monday, 6 August 2012

Lusted After: All Things Studs

I am lusting after all things studs at the moment, I just can’t seem to get enough of them-so much so that I have ordered some from ebay and I plan to jazz up some pieces in current wardrobe with them. It’s a cheap way of updating your wardrobe and will guarantee that what you’re wearing will be unique.  
What are you lusting after this month fashion wise? Any DIY projects planned?
Thanks for reading,
xKx

Yummy product of the month: July 2012


The Body Shop’s Watermelon Body Lotion

For those of you who have read my previous ‘yummy product of the month’ post [take a peek] you will be well aware that I love all things watermelon. So in keeping with the theme of watermelon I thought I would honour The Body Shop’s Watermelon Body Lotion with being my yummy product of July. Unfortunately for me there isn’t a Body Shop close to me (nearest is approx 45minutes away). So when visiting the city I took the opportunity to pick up a few bargains in the Body Shop as they were having a sale. I was just about to walk out the door with my purchases in hand when I spotted this little gem for £2!!!


I'm enjoying this body lotion at the minute and use it on days when I want a lighter scent than perfume. The smell is just divine. Or as my brother put it ‘so mouth watering he could drink it.’  It absorbs fast into your skin and feels nice. I would say that this feels more water based than other moisturisers that I use however this doesn’t leave a greasy film on your skin afterwards, which I like.  My brother has recently taken a shine to this product and for fear of him using all mine on me I thought I would purchase a bottle of this online for him only to discover that they aren’t selling it online anymore, which I assume means they won’t be selling it in store either??? Cue a devastated brother. So I am on a mission for another watermelon smelling body lotion- any recommendations?



Thanks for reading,

xKx

Product Rave: MUA Lipstick, Benefit’s Skinny Dip Dupe!!!


As stated before in this blog I’m a lipstick lover. I love how a lipstick can add a pop of colour to any outfit whilst leaving my lips feeling moisturised and kissable at the same time.

Lately I prefer to wear brighter lipstick shades in the evening and opt for a more natural shade during the day. A while back I received a Benefit lipstick from a family member in the shade ‘Skinny Dip’ which I instantly feel in love with and had been wearing every single day until it ran out. I went online to repurchase to discover that it retailed at £14-now I know I said I loved the lipstick but for a  girls who’s currently living on a budget due to being strapped for cash I just couldn’t justify spending £14 on a lipstick. So I decided I would just have to find a cheaper alternative-hello MUA lipstick in shade 11.
Lipstick
Shade 11
As usual I was browsing around Superdrug and decided to look at one of my favourite stalls-MUA. I’m a complete lover of this brand and have many of their lipsticks already. Whilst casually looking though the lipsticks I discovered shade 11, tried it on and thought ‘wow this looks just like my skinny dip lipstick.’ The best thing however is that this lipstick was a quid, yes one whole measly quid-hey I could buy 14 MUA lipsticks for the price of one Benefit lipstick [I proceeded to buy four MUA lipsticks that day and one lip-gloss, lol]. Now I know the colour isn’t the EXACT match but it’s pretty darn close. The only major difference between the two is that Benefits lipstick is slightly silkier looking, but this effect can easily be added to MUA’s dupe with some clear lip-gloss which I also purchased for a quid. Let’s just say I will defo be repurchasing MUA’s lipstick in shade 11 when I run out-unless there’s a dupe of that for less than a quid,lol

Have you found MUA’s lipstick to be a good dupe of other more expensive lipsticks?
Thanks for reading,
xKx











Sunday, 5 August 2012

Gradual Tan Review: Garnier Body, Summer-body Moisturising Lotion Sun-Kissed Look (Deep).



According to Garnier what this product claims to do:

Garnier Summer Body Sun Kissed look Moisturiser is a 2 in 1 gradual tanning moisturiser giving you that gorgeous sun-kissed glow day after day! Enriched with Camomile, this long lasting moisturiser lasts for an impressive 12 hours, and contains only a small amount of tanning agents so each day your tan develops darker, resulting in natural, streak-free results!

 In one step, Summer Body moisturising lotion moisturises your skin from morning until evening whilst gradually building a natural looking tan in harmony with your skin tone.



·         Non greasy, light moisturiser with a hint of self tan

·         Builds a sun-kissed glowing tan to suit your skin tone

·         Camomile and apricot extract to leave skin soft and supple

 

Personally I prefer how I look with a bit of a tan and seeing as my pale Irish skin is never going to tan naturally I turn to the bottle of the fake stuff for a bit of help. I will openly admit that I have always had a love/hate relationship with fake tan- I love the colour pay off, hate the effort of keeping my tan looking good. As I am maturing [24 this year...eek] I have noticed from looking at old pictures and talking with my mum that I look better with a more subtle tan as opposed to full on dark tan, hence my search for a product that would leave me looking lightly bronzed with minimal effort. I also wanted a fake tanning product that would leave my skin looking and feeling moisturised as I found that many fake tans were very drying on my skin [yes I’m looking at you st.moriz]. From discussing fake tans and my problems with them one day in work I was kindly introduced to Garnier’s Summer Body Gradual Tan by a work colleague and at £2.89 in Savers for 400ml of product I thought to myself ‘why not.’

Basically Garnier Summer-body Moisturising Lotion Sun-Kissed Look is a moisturiser with a hint of self than that can be built up gradually. I use the shade "Deep Sun-kissed Look" which is the darkest. There is also a fairer option which I haven’t tried but may purchase to use for those times where I want to maintain the tan I have achieved without going much darker.

Scent:

In my opinion it smells lovely. It has a strong fruity scent of apricots which actually reminds me of Much Bunch apricot yoghurts-yummy!!! The scent of apricots does linger on the skin whilst developing but once washed off in the shower/bath the scent disappears. I actually apply this at night so it doesn’t really matter to me and I actually like this scent but for those who don’t like the scent of apricots then this product may be a no-go for you. The great thing about this gradual tanner is that there is no hint of the biscuity fake tan smell at all, which is great. Prior to using this tan a work colleague used this tan religiously and I never once smelt the tell tale ‘fake tan’ smell off her. She even commented that her partner loved the smell as it was developing. So this is also great for those with partners who detest the smell of regular fake tanning products.

 

Application and Upkeep:

This tan comes out as a white moisturiser, so unlike regular fake tan with a colour guide it can be hard to see where you have applied product and you don't know which bits you've missed until the colour has developed. However I recommend using a tanning mitt until you get used to using this product, also a bonus to having no colour guide is that your sheets and PJ’s won’t get stained-hooray!!!

Overall I found this easy to use. You use it just as you would with a normal body moisturiser, just be sure to wash your hands afterwards if you’re not using a glove/mitt. I personally like to use disposable gloves to protect my hands and apply it all over like any other moisturiser, in circular motions starting from my feet upwards. I then quickly give a rub down to my body with a mitt which takes off any excess lotion and ensures an even finish [good way of avoiding streaks]. For my back I normally get a housemate to apply the lotion however I have recently purchased Velvotan’s self tan back applicator which allows me to apply the gradual tanner to my back evenly myself.

I always apply some regular moisturiser to my elbows, armpits, knees and feet to ensure that these areas don’t over absorb the product as no one likes extra tanned knees, elbows etc. For my hands and feet I dilute the gradual tanner with regular moisturiser with a 40/60 ratio. So 40% gradual tanner, 60% regular moisturiser. This makes my tan look more natural looking and ‘sun kissed.’

If using this product on your face I would suggest applying regular moisturiser to your hair line, eyebrows, sides of nose and your top lip to ensure that you don’t get product over-load on these areas as no-one wants a fake tan moustache!!! I have used this product on my face but prefer to use my He-shi face and body gel on my face and neck as I find my face is harder to tan than the rest of my body and doesn’t seem to take this gradual tanners as well as other parts of my body [may just be me and my skin type].

I found that this sunk into my skin fairly quickly [way more quickly than Dove or St.Tropez gradual tanners], leaving my skin feeling a little tacky for approx 5 mins. I found that I could get dressed fairly quickly which is great when you don’t want to be hanging around naked for ages especially when it’s cold and your tired.

I’m really bad at remembering to moisturise so this product is great for keeping my skin soft. I have never had the scaly skin effect with this tan and find that it comes off easy when using baby oil and exfoliating gloves in the bath/shower. I use this tan approx twice a week and would only exfoliate my skin once a week. If I can remember I try to moisturise my skin once a day, however sometimes I skip this stage due to laziness and it hasn’t appeared to have affected the look of this tan which is great.  

Results:

The next day there was a definite noticeable colour change, I was a nice light/medium tanned colour which looked very natural [others around me commented saying that it looked natural]. However for those wanting a fair tan you may be better suited to the lighter formula.

For me this tan was dark enough after one application, but for those who preferred the more tanned look you could apply it again the next day. I sometimes like my legs a little darker so would sometimes tan my legs two nights in a row which gives off a lovely natural colour. I personally top this tan up every 3-4 days and more regularly if I have a special occasion coming up. My work colleague used this tan every second night which gave a lovely bronzed look and didn’t look too fake or over applied. So I would say that this tan is buildable. However I feel if you’re using this product every day to achieve your desired tan you may be better suited to using a regular fake tan i.e weekly and topping it up in-between with this to achieve a more natural colour.

Overall:

Overall all rate this product. I love the colour it gives me, the ease of use, that its low maintance, the fact that I can tailor the amount of colour I want, I love that I can see how much product is left in the bottle, I love the smell of the product whilst developing and that I don’t smell of fake tan, I love that there is no trace of this product smell wise on my skin after showering, I love that my skin is left feeling super soft for ages after using the product and finally I love that this product is readily available to me and is supper affordable.

**I have also tried Dove, Palmers, He-Shi and St.Tropez gradual tanners’ prior to trying this product. I disliked the He-Shi and St.Tropez gradual tanners as I wasn’t very impressed with the colour payoff especially when you consider their price. I couldn’t stand the smell of Palmers gradual tanner and actually really liked Doves gradual tanner; it comes a close second to Garnier’s gradual tan, loosing points for its tackiness on the body.**



Where you can buy the product and current offers:

250ml bottle:

Tesco for £1.90 which normally retails at £3.80, [buy here].

Just for fragrances for £2.55 with free shipping, [buy here].

Boots for £5.10 which is their normal retail price, [buy here].

400ml bottle:

Tesco’s for £2.50 which normally retails at £5, [buy here].

Savers for £2.89.

Superdrug for £3.55, which normally retails at £7.10, [buy here].

Semichem for £3.99, [buy here].

Boots for £7.15, [buy here].



Thanks for reading!!!

xKx