Friday, 23 December 2016

2016; An Odd Year (Top Achievements & New Years Resolutions)

We are just over a week away from the New Year, which yet again has flown by quicker than ever. Another year for people to set unrealistic resolutions, another year older and another year that we have survived. By 'we', I mean us mentally unstable individuals who didn't think we'd make it through the first year of our struggles yet here we are, several years later and still soldiering on. New Years are a hard thing to get your head round when you're unwell. Despite trying our hardest to believe that this event is a time of celebration and positivity, we always have our doubts but we stick to the hope that maybe this year will be our year, just maybe.

I am sure that I am not the only person who has had a very up and down 2016; one day being incredible and the next crashing down. I know that this year hasn't been my best, but it also hasn't been my worst. I managed to achieve some amazing things and believe it or not, even some resolutions. I wanted to talk mostly about the highlights.. I know that some of you are probably wondering about the lowlights which of course, there were a few too many of but we cant change the past, so why dwell on it?

I have spent this entire year with my boyfriend and I know that I wouldn't be where I am today without him, he has helped me more than he could ever known and I am so blessed to have created so many memories with him. I have managed to find some wonderful new friends and have equally cut contact with a few which had turned toxic and became negative aspects of my life. I have even got better at doing my make-up and if that isn't an achievement, then what is? I have improved my alcohol tolerance and have started new therapy as well as binge watched Dance Moms and Orphan Black. There are so many little achievements that go unrecognised when in reality, they are the little things that we should hold on to. So, lets get into my top ten achievements of 2016 (in no particular order as we all know that I am indecisive):

  • I managed to get my AS results after two years and passed both of the subjects that I sat, getting Cs in Creative Writing and Health & Social Care. I could have done better, but for my state of mind, I was shocked with these results.
  • I met Olly Murs for the second time and it was an incredible moment of my year.
  • I started up my blog after years of putting it off due to feeling anxious.
  • I worked up the courage and braved going clubbing and actually enjoyed myself.
  • Booked a skydive for myself and Elle in order to raise money for MIND; the mental health charity.
  • I started my YouTube channel even though I am still getting to grips with it.
  • I have found a job that I enjoy and have been there for over a year now which is the longest that I have had a job for.
  • I went on my first two holidays with my boyfriend.
  • After much practice, I managed to finally become more comfortable when using public transport, especially bus and train journeys.
  • I managed to find a flock of friends and I now have much healthier and happier relationships than I used to.
Like all of us, I have many (admittedly, some unrealistic) resolutions which I hope to achieve during 2017. My top five of these are:
  • Completing my A2 levels with results that I can be proud of and finally being able to leave Sixth Form.
  • Quitting smoking without turning to an e-cig.
  • Being allowed my provisional licence and learning to drive.
  • Saving money to buy expensive things as well as having money in my (non-existent) savings account.
  • Continuing my recovery and being able to manage and cope with my illnesses better.
I hope that you all have a lovely Christmas and Happy New Year, here is to a happier and healthier year. Are any of you celebrating the New Year, or the end of the Old Year? What are your resolutions for the year? I would love to hear them.

Thank-you for reading, Tay x

What I got for my Nineteenth Birthday

I have seen these videos spiraling around YouTube and decided to write up a post. My birthday was on the 20th December and I turned nineteen (I am well aware that I still only look about fourteen but what can you do?). I have been well and truly spoilt by my family, friends and boyfriend and I cannot explain how grateful I am.

I always find having a birthday so close to Christmas quite an inconvenience, simply because it is so difficult to make plans and organise something special. However, everything fell in place nicely and I had such a good time with my friends. 

From my mum, I got tickets to see Olly Murs perform at the Metro Christmas Live 2016 which actually took place on Friday the 16th. It was in Newcastle; a six hour journey from my hometown but it was so amazing and I sobbed my heart out yet again. Other than Olly, a whole range of artists performed and it was such a good concert. We managed to see Louisa Johnson, John Legend, Craig David, James Arthur, Jonas Blue, Sam Lavery, Dua Lipa, Calum Scott and MO. I got to spend it with my mum, aunt, cousin and best friend. Aside from this, I was also extremely lucky and managed to receive the Morphe 35O palette which I am already in love with and cannot wait to start using.

My close friend Elle bought me some new Soap & Glory Handmaid Hand Sanitiser as I adore the scent but had ran out of my old bottle. She also got me a gorgeous mug from notonthehighstreet which is personalised with my name and 'crazy cat lady'. Although I don't drink hot drinks, I love receiving mugs as I can always manage to find something to put in them. At the moment it is filled with sweets but I am sure that they wont last long. The final and most exciting present that Elle bought me was tickets to see Olly Murs on tour in March which I am so thankful for. I honestly cannot wait.

Moving on, another close friend, Leah also knows me too well and bought me a new book named 'Anatomy of a Misfit' by Andrea Portes which looks so good and I am looking forward to reading this over Christmas. Next, she bought me a Contour/Concealer Oval Brush which I have been wanting to try for so long. It is so good and I cannot wait to try some more. Moving on yet still staying on the theme of make-up, she bought me the Sleek Whipped Cream Highlighter from their new Rockstars Collection in the shade 'Pink Opal'. This highlighter is so pigmented and I have already worn it. Finally from Leah, I was lucky enough to get the Zoeva Cocoa Blend Eye-Shadow Palette which has the most gorgeous winter shades in and is so pigmented.

I next received the Calvin Klein Sheer Beauty perfume from my manager at work. I love the scent which is rather sweet but with a mature twist. This has already fitted in well with my perfume collection and I cannot wait to use it, despite it being much stronger than my trusted 'safety scents'. 

Moving on, I received the most gorgeous set of underwear from Ann Summers, which my boyfriend got me. I am so in love with it. I personally hate spending money on bras, no matter how pretty they are so I am glad that I have someone to buy gorgeous underwear for me. Also from my boyfriend, I received the Roberto Cavalli perfume which is my all time favourite and I have just ran out. I am so thankful for this gift as I wear it so often. Finally, from my boyfriend I got a lush gift set called 'Sweet Christmas' which contains Snow Fairy Shower Gel, Snow Fairy Body Conditioner and the Rock Star Soap. All of these will definitely be used within the next few months and lets face it.. Is Christmas even the Christmas season without snow fairy? 

I was lucky enough to receive a pair of Monsters Inc fluffy pyjamas from my brother which are so comfortable, a pair of eyelashes from my friend and a Ted Baker Treasure Trove set from my boyfriends family containing so much lush make-up as well as lots of money from my other relatives. I am so thankful for all of my gifts, I had a lovely birthday and I hope that I have given some of you ideas of what to ask for for your birthdays or Christmas. If anybody would like to see reviews of any of these products, feel free to leave a comment or contact me and I will get them up for you.

Thank-you for reading, Tay x

Sunday, 18 December 2016

Too Faced No Filter Selfie Powders Review

The 'Too Faced #TFNOFILTER Selfie Powders Palette' contains three "weightless, undetectable finishing powders" which mimic the effects of your favourite photo filters as according to Too Faced; "Selfie Powders are your filters for the real world!" This palette first launched back in 2015 as part of their summer range. These powders are £32 on the Too Faced website and Debenhams but I was lucky enough to find mine for £9.99 in TK Maxx. Despite having this product for quite some time, I am still rather undecided on my overall thoughts. 

Starting off with the packaging, I think that the outside design of the palette is very cute and quirky yet also rather intimidating. I find that this palette looks sleek but with a more childish approach, making it look as though it is aimed at a young teenager audience. I think that the Instagram inspired camera shot works really well and I understand that the hashtag again represents Instagram, there is just something that I really don't like and I cannot seem to put my finger on it. The packaging is cardboard, it is very light and thin, making it easy to travel with. As you open the palette, there is a mirror which is always handy although I am not sure about how long this mirror will remain perfect for, due to the packaging being cardboard. Underneath the mirror there are four of the same photos of a dog; one normal and the other three with each of the powdered filters. I again think that a photo of a dog definitely lowers the predicted target audience. The three powders are a really good size and are completely different from one another. They can be used alone, all over the face or mixed up to add different effects to specific areas.

Sunrise: This is the first powder within the palette and can be rather off putting at a first glance. It is a bright yellow with a mustard undertone. However, at a closer look, it can quickly be recognised that this shade is rather golden as an oppose to the typical bright yellow. This shade has a purpose to add a brightening defused warmth to the skin. This shade is much more subtle once applied and isn't chunky or over powering at all. I personally use this shade under my eyes, brightening any dark circles that I may have and sometimes underneath my contour, highlighting it. In summer, I could imagine that this shade would leave such a gorgeous glow when being used all over the face. 

Totally Toasted: This is a golden brown toned powder with the purpose to provide a bronzed, smoothing glow to the skin. This shade is defiantly the most colour payoff out of the three. It defiantly warms up your skin and works as a stunning illuminator. If you have a fair skin tone, this would work perfectly as a bronzer as you can defiantly build the colour up. I love the sheen finish that this powder leaves on my skin and I typically use it on my temples and forehead before blending it down into my contour. 

Moon River: I'm not going to lie, this is another rather off putting shade at first glance. It is a light, lavender shade and provides a cool, ethereal, lightening glow. Once applied to the skin, this product is much more subtle than it looks. I mostly use this down the center of my face instead of using a bold highlighter which could sometimes look too much. I find that this gives a lovely, defused glow and works really well alone or on top of a highlighter.

I find that this palette is definitely not essential if you own other finishing powders but is a nice addition to have. I don't think that I would have spent full retail price on this product but nonetheless, it does its job and it does work. I find that the powders feel in the middle of a creamy and slightly chalky texture but when applying, there is no fall out at all. The powders are extremely good quality and although the results are not always obvious to the naked eye, it does give a gorgeous glow on camera and within the light. This palette essentially has the task to brighten, bronze and illuminate the skin which it defiantly achieves. Like I said before, you can combine all three shades over your face or use them alone. 

Do you own this palette? Do you love it or hate it?

Thank-you for reading, Tay x

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Urban Decay Moondust Palette

Despite being a fan of make-up; especially eye-shadow, up until last week, I was yet to try out any of the Urban Decay Palettes. I have had my eye on this palette in particular since looking through Leah's palettes and I instantly fell in love. In all honesty, I was debating this purchase simply because the shades are rather bright and extremely shimmery; both something that I don't feel confident enough to wear too often. Having said that, this palette is defiantly one of a kind and irresistible.

If the shades themselves aren't enough to sell you, please take a moment to look at the packaging. The box of the palette has a photo of space with the palette itself looking like it is covered in glitter; resembling the sparkles within the shadows. The name of the palette on the outside has actually been cut out of the lid and reflects the mirror from the inside which I thought was another rather unique aspect. I think that the palette is slightly bulky but overall a good size; much more suitable for travelling than the Naked palettes. The palette has a magnetic seal, ensuring that the pigments stay fresh (as well as making the palette really satisfying to open and close). 

This palette retails for £35 but is currently selling in Debenhams for £31.50 and contains eight shades; making it slightly pricier than most palettes. Every shade is brand new ranging from light peaches to dark grays, ensuring that you are able to create a look for every occasion. The shades within this palette can all be used either wet or dry and UD recommends that you use your fingers to apply them which I know, isn't the most hygienic but will ensure that your make-up looks incredible all day long.

Specter - Soft and shimmering pink/peach with a tonal sparkle. 
Element - 'Amazing' peach with a pink undertone and sparkles.
Magnetic - Purple with sparkle.
Lightyear - Vibrant Green with tonal sparkle.
Granite - Silvery metallic shade with multicoloured sparkle.
Lithium - Brown coppery-gold with sparkle.
Vega - Bright blue with tonal sparkle.
Galaxy - Smokey blue-gray with sparkle.

I must admit, I haven't used this product too many times but the pigmentation is incredible. I have found that the products defiantly work brighter and better whilst using a wet brush (I use setting spray to dampen mine) before blending the edges out with a dry brush. When using the shades dry (photo below), I find that I have a lot of fall-out and the shades are much less intense which is actually quite good, meaning that all of these shades can have two completely different effects.

The only fault that I have with this product is that once the products have even been touched; you can tell. Their 3-D metallic shades appear to have been deflated in the middle which isn't actually the case and in fact, just shows how pigmented and dreamy these shades really are.

If these eight shades don't suit your taste, then also within this collection, Urban Decay have brought out seven new liquid cream eye-shadows which I am very curious about, retailing at £15 each as well as having the shades from the palette 'Magnetic' and 'Vega' and twenty-two all different and unique singular shadows which retails at £14 each. I would highly recommend this palette as not only can you look incredible, you can have so much fun playing around with it.

Here are a couple of looks that I have managed to create using this palette..

Have you got your hands on this product? What were your first impressions?

Thank-you for reading, Tay x
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