Wednesday 27 January 2016

8 Things That Make Me Happy

Of course there are the normal things that make me happy. My friends; family; pets; holidays and wine but there's more to all of us than that.

When the week's are long and the days are Monday-y it's good to reflect on what makes us smile and the things that make our hearts beam.

Here is my list of the things that make me happy.

1.   The perfect avo

2.  When there are parking spaces at the front of the gym. If I wanted to hike I wouldn't have come

3.   When my unintentional dreadlocks are easy to brush out

4.   When the deli puts enough sandwich in my sandwich

5.   When I meet people with dogs. 'Oh how interesting you work in Marine Biology. What's your dog called? What breed is she? When can I come to your house?'

6.   When a scab has got to prime scab picking maturity. Soz about that one.

7.   Hashtag disasters. Any one still up for #susanalbumparty?

8.   Cyber goths raving to Thomas the Tank Engine 

I'll just leave this here. You can thank me later.

What are your little victories?

Saturday 23 January 2016

Why It's Cool To Be A Basic Bitch

Amongst many definitions on the Urban Dictionary, a basic bitch is described as someone who is just an extra regular female. So many people strive to break away from the crowd, be totally original and unique and you know what that is totally amazing. But many of us and are just happy cruising through life and enjoying the same things as everyone else. Whether it's because insecurity stops you from putting yourself out there or you do genuinely just love Velvet Teddy, it's cool. There's no judgement here; asides from the Pumpkin Spice addiction I'm repping for the basic bitch crew.

I slave over winged eyeliner and never get it quite right, but I'm okay with that (sort of). Each time I take a trembling stab at it I'm getting marginally better. Typical basic bitch probs to suffer from shitty flicks and lust after Pinteresty Jaclyn Hill wings. One day they will be mine.

And who doesn't love Froyo!? Frozen yoghurt presents endless possibilities and is healthy enough to allow you to pretend the caramel sauce, sprinkles and mini marshmallows don't count. That my friends is called breaking even. And is my favourite justification for anything, ever.

I fall into the category of easily influenced gals who can't resist a splurge if someone even vaguely recommends a fab lipstick, scented candle or face cream. I'm an online marketeer's dream. God even the mention of 'SALE' and I'm there before you've even blinked. As the patron saint of Velvet Teddy I can attest to that. I'm pretty sure I bought it after reading one mention online. All I can say is that my credit card company must LOVE me.

I mean who doesn't love gin. I swear every blogger has it in their bio (me included) and you know why? Because it is so bloody delicious. Basic bitches unite!

We all have a moment in each day where the thought "that is soo 'gramable" goes through our minds. We may have even borrowed someone's lunch/shoes/lipstick for a post or bought something just for it's Instagram potential. In a world where popularity, influence and even 'worthiness' is factored on your online presence the pull of presenting your 'best self' can be hard to resist. 

Gym leggings become your everyday uniform and you're not even bothered. I probably wear my gym leggings for non gym stuff more than I do for actually working out and that really is saying something. They're the ultimate in comfort and the more you wear them the more flattering you will convince yourself they are. Right now mine are in the 10/10 would wear again category. They have to be ripped off my legs for work and that makes me so sad.

Ultimately there is nothing wrong with liking the same things as everyone else. The messy bun is your signature. Starbucks, emojis,  SATC, #SweaterWeather, Uggs and even giving smizing a bash -  you're not alone. I'm standing right there with you. They're all so popular for a reason - because they are bloody fantastic. Oh and owning a pair of Louboutins in your lifetime. Hashtag LifeGoals. 

At the end of the day who doesn't come straight home from work, immediately take their trousers off before the key has even come out of the door and change into their jammies. Tea and biscuits a go-go and straight under a blanket while Netflix soldiers on playing ignored PLL in the background while you cruise through Twitter and watch funny videos of cats and scroll through Pets4Homes looking for a fictional puppy. We've all been there because we are one and the same (lol) and we are all fronting for the basic bitches!

Wednesday 20 January 2016

MAC: Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolour Review

Long have I been a champion of MAC lipsticks, owning far too many to even wear, so when I found out about the newly released Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolours (RMLLs) I was beyond gassed. Jeffrey Star has made me more of a liquid lipstick fan so I was super excited to try one of these bad boys.

I firstly checked them out online and found all of the shades I was interested in were sold out. Dead end. Uggghh a trip in to MAC is the worst. Thousands of girls pushing and shoving and crowded around the products so you can't see anything. Such a nightmare.

I was very brave though and went on Saturday. A lot of the collection was sold out but luckily none that I had my eye on. The colour selection isn't vast but a great starting point. I already have quite a few dark reds, deep berry tones and nudes so I decided on a peachy toned nude colour. I tried out a few and the lovely MUA who was advising me helped me to choose a shade for my skin.

This is where it all started to go wrong. Every colour I tried out on my hand came out COMPLETELY differently to how it appeared. Warning you now guys I didn't get a picture to prove this but I will demonstrate a little later on. Put your imagining hat on right now - I tried Mademoiselle and Lady Be Good (left and right of this picture, middle is Back In Vogue) and both were super orange. Now I have Morange (MAC's bright orange lippy) and have rocked it on many occasions but they were like a diluted orange juice - quite corally and totally nothing that would suit me. 

I mentioned this to the MUA who was helping me who agreed the some of the colours transferred differently. Thank god I didn't go in guns ablazing and buy them online! We agreed on Back in Vogue and off I went. To be fair, I did really want one so didn't go as far as trying it on my lips. I liked it on my hand and that was enough for me. A pretty pricey decision TBF at £21 but it was MAC ya know... I did also by the lipliner Spice which, ugh, is divine!

So get home, obviously first things first I tried on the lipcolour. I love the applicator, much sturdier than the Jeffree Star applicators which I mentioned before. Rather than being shaped like a doe foot it is much more pointed at the top, almost like a leaf.  The consistency is creamy and dries matte. The product has good lasting power and doesn't feel too drying on the lips. But I can't decide if the colour is for me. I think it's just much more coral than I had wanted. I was after more of a peachy toned shade, perhaps a little darker than this.  In the tube and even on my swatches it looks like a deep dusty rose which is not how I would describe it on my lips. It is definitely growing on me though!

Left: dry, right: wet 

I would definitely recommend the RMLLs but totally advise you try them out before buying them. This isn't a product to be buying online unless you are going for the deeper tones which I think you just can't go wrong with. You can view the entire collection here.

Have you tried the MAC Retro Matte Liquid Lipcolours? If so, what did you think?

Monday 18 January 2016

Dear Vagina, why so blue??

Today is Blue Monday, apparently the most depressing day of the year. But fear not! This isn't a place for doom and gloom. There will be no tears today because we're going to cruise the best blue beauties the web has to offer.

PS. I hope this title wasn't wasted on my fellow SATC fans!

Cobalt Blue Pouch by ALLEGRO LONDON £150

I hope you have all had a gorgeous day and it wasn't as painful as Monday's have a habit of being!

Tuesday 12 January 2016

Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipstick Review

If you have been here before you may have read that I am a huge lipstick fan. Not just any lipsticks - primarily MAC lipsticks. I'll forever be a MAC devotee but another guy might have stolen my lipstick shaped heart. 

Introducing the fabulous Jeffree Star. For those of you how know who this crazy cat is you can probably skip a few lines.  I came across Jeffree Star Velour Liquid Lipsticks in the vlogs of my favourite American YouTubers and the first shade that had me weeping for my own was the spectacular Unicorn Blood. This sultry shade is my ultimate go-to for evenings and nights out; replacing my beloved MAC Sin and Media (for now at least).

The liquid lipsticks are super long lasting and I mean super long lasting. They slide on easily on a doe foot applicator and dry to a matte finish in about a minute giving you time to straighten up lines and fix any smudges.

There are dozens of shades to chose from ranging from the Drug Lord, the brightest white, to bubblegum blue Jawbreaker and Red Rum - a classic red.

Sadly my collection is limited to a tiny trio and as far as I can tell there are no UK stockists, online or otherwise.  I managed to get mine on eBay, but I have also seen them on Amazon. Take a deep breath - they are around £20 a pop. BUT SO WORTH IT!!

Unicorn Blood - how absolutely to DIE for is this!

Celebrity Skin - the perfect nude

Masochist - a gorgeous pinky red

Unedited swatches - each shade: left - dry, right - wet.

I love this vegan & cruelty-free brand for many reasons but most of all because I trust them. I know that I can slick one on and not have to worry about it smudging or fading out for hours. Nine sweaty hours in an office that switches between tropical and subarctic - easy. No worrying on a night out with the gang about sloppy drunken applications in front of a crowded mirror - that truly is the worst, amiright!? 

The only thing I would change about this dream product is the stability of the applicator. I personally would prefer it to be a little firmer but I am more than willing to forgive! 

Don't just take my word for it, invest in these perfect little lipstains - you won't regret it!

Saturday 9 January 2016

My Pick of the January 2016 Sales

Who can resist a January sales bargain? (Hopefully) stocked up on Christmas money you can treat yourself minus the I should really be buying for other people Christmas guilt. I've had a good cruise around online for some great sales buys and have chosen my favourites to share with you.

Navy Sequin Dress (Was £40 now £20)

Textured Tipped Crop Jumper (Was £36 now £20)

HIJACK Fringe Ankle Boots (Was £69 now £40)

Lizzy Hipster (Was £6 now £3)

Frida Kimono Jacket (Was £60 now £18)

Dark Green Marl Rib Knit Jumper (Was £19.99 now £10)

Grey Python Snakeskin Clutch  (RRP £120 now £49.99)

Plum Braided Headband (Was £4.99 now £3) 

Burgundy Tulip Dress (Was £32 now £19)

Mollie Jacquard Dress (Was £89 now £53.40)

What were your best sales buys this year?

Friday 8 January 2016

My New Year's Resolutions

I have never been one for setting proper New Year's resolutions; partly because I know my willpower is limited and partly because even though I set myself little goals in my mind on a daily basis, I hate to disappoint myself. This year I am going to make an exception and try my best. 

1.  Continue to improve my health and fitness

I love a MCDs as much as the next person and if you know me you will know that salt is my forever best friend, but since the beginning of last year in an oh my god we just booked a holiday and I need to be thin panic I decide to make a lasting change to my diet and fitness. No more crash diets and excessive exercising before I go away, but a proper change - eating well through the week and exercising regularly has seen my body change. Now I'm waiting for my mind to catch up... I am now in the routine of working out before I go to the office 4 days a week and spinning every Thursday. I eat healthily (but also allow myself a chocolate biscuit if I want) Monday to Friday and treat myself on the weekends. I know this isn't a super speedy way to change your shape but it is what suits me. I am miserable without having some guilt free treats and am happy to continue as I am. It better be worth the wait! 

2.  Commit myself to One & The Same

I have been a fair weather blogger for about 5 years - blogging when I remember or when I get a rush of blood to the head on what I have been missing out on. I have been meaning to buy my own domain and redesign my layout for years but never had the oomph to get on with it. But here I am and please, if you haven't heard from me in a while give me a sharp poke with a pointy stick.

3. Accept my anxieties and move the fuck on

Like what it seems the rest of the population suffer from I am an anxious person. You name it and I have worried myself to distraction over it. I am trying to start to except my anxieties and take control of them head on. I can never quieten the voice that overrides my common sense, but I can realise how silly I'm being and try to get a grip. Anxiety doesn't rule my life but likes to make an unfriendly reminder of it's existence on a more than desirable basis. This year I want to say biiiii.

4. Stop making lumpy hot chocolate

This is probably the most important of all my NY resolutions. I just do not possess the capabilities to make a hot choc which resembles a warty toad. Someone, anyone - PLEASE HELP!

What are your resolutions for 2016?

Wednesday 6 January 2016

Christmas 2015

My Christmas break this year was an absolute blast. I was home from Leeds for over two weeks and loved every second. 100% of the time I was knee deep in mud while sorting out the horses; nursing a wine hangover and smiling from ear to ear.

Only a few of my favourite festive moments made it into a photograph, but I hope you enjoy what I have to share!

What was your favourite part of Christmas 2015?