Monday, 20 June 2016

The Sunglasses Edit

I have a confession: I have a bit of an obsession with sunglasses.

I wear them all year round, and like to adjust my styles accordingly. Due to my love of sunglasses, I decided to pick a few of my favourites that I've seen in stores this season. All of the styles listed below are easily available in high street stores or popular online retailers. Some are very affordable, and a few pairs are more of an investment, but if you love them enough and look after them, they'll last you for years and be worth every penny.

1. Sunglasses £7.99 @ H&M

Hardly the most original name, but that doesn't take away from the fact that these are simple, classic and suit most face shapes.

2. Sunglasses £6.99 @ H&M

I have a real thing for tortoiseshell and the simplicity of this pair is just adorable.

3. Sunglasses £9.99 @ H&M

The fun little intricate cut out design on these make them a stand out pair without being too in your face.

4. Kooky Oversized Round Sunglasses £22 @ Topshop

This pair are bright, bold and super fun! A must have for any festival goer!

5. Tortoiseshell Wayfarer Sunglasses by Ray-Ban £125 @ Topshop

Back at it again with the Tortoishell! This pair are a little more expensive than the others, but are amazing quality and well worth the money!

6. Steelcat Sunglasses by Quay @ Topshop £30

This fun take on the simple cat eye style is absolutely stunning.

7. Black Mirrored Round Skinny Frame Sunglasses £7.99 @ New Look

The bright coloured lens make this simple pair eye catching. Another festival favourite!

8. Gold Wood Print Sunglasses £5.99 @ New Look

This pair caught my eye for the simple reason that they're a little unusual. I haven't seen a pair in this style with this wood grain print before, but I think they're super fun.

9.White Floral Print Retro Sunglasses £10 @ River Island

The floral print on this pair from River Island are a cute, summery addition to this otherwise classic shape.

10. Brown Tortoiseshell Extreme Cat Eye Sunglasses £14 @ River Island

I promise this is the last tortoiseshell pair on the list.... But if you're looking for something a little bit bold, out there and over the top, this extreme cat eye pair may be the ones for you!

11. Quay Australia My Girl Exclusive Mirror Cat Eye Sunglasses in Marble £30

Quay Australia are renowned for their beautiful and eye catching sunglasses designs and this pair are no exception!

12. Round Sunglasses £6.99 @ H&M

The final pair on my list, these are a little bit different to what I normally like but for some reason I found myself drawn to them. The simple muted colours and design mean this pair will go with every outfit.

That's it for this summer edit, I hope you found some inspiration for your perfect summer eye wear!

Until next time,

-Holly xx 

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Sense Store Finds

Not that I ever need an excuse to go into charity stores, but I am severely lacking in summer clothes and I am off to Amsterdam next week so whilst I was waiting for a train last week, I popped into one of my local charity stores.

It was a Sense store which means the proceeds go to helping deafblind children and adults. As I'm sure you already know, I have a bit of a shopping addiction, especially in charity stores, so I always feel better knowing my money is going to help those in need.

I bought four items during my time there, all coming to a total of£12, and two of the items were brand new with their original store tags!

The first item I picked up was a long sleeve white cotton Ralph Lauren T shirt. It was in mint condition and was priced at £4. As soon as I saw it I knew I had to have it, and even though it's long sleeved which isn't ideal for the upcoming summer months, it is quite thin so I can just resign it to over cast days or chilly evenings. These T shirts usually retail at £50 in store so I was super happy with this purchase.

The next item I picked up was a simple black cotton camisole top with satin ribbon straps. The item caught my eye because of the beautiful clam lace detailing around the bust. I used to have a similar one which I wore all the time. Unfortunately due to it being one of my favourite tops, it meant that it got quite worn out and eventually I ripped a hole in it. The brand is Damart which I'm not really certain on but I think it's a catalogue for older women to order clothes from. When I got the top home and eventually managed to try it on I found that the fit was more of that of a modesty top for under low cut shirts, which meant it came a little higher up my chest. However, being a little heavier on top than the average girl my size, this cut suits me fine because it gives me that little extra coverage that most other vest tops lack. I think the reason I fell in love with this simple top so much is because of the clam lace was giving me some serious mermaid vibes ..... It cost me only £2 as well, so I was very pleased, and it was stated that the item was brand new.

The third item I picked up was a thick jersey stretch skirt by Zara, which was brand new with its original store tags. I was pleased to find this item because one of my housemates has one just like it and I had always been envious. This item is so versatile, it looks great with a plain t shirt or vest top and white converse for a more summery look, but it also suits a jumper and tights which will be perfect in the winter. This item will definitely be coming with me to Amsterdam. Best of all, it only cost £3, despite it being £10 brand new in stores, and it being a current season item in Zara right now!

The final item I picked up was an acid wash, distressed ripped pair of high waisted jeans. They are only originally from Primark, but still retail at approximately £15, and I got them for £3. I usually live in black jeans, and despite it being the summer I know I will still lean towards wearing jeans on days when I just want to keep it casual and lazy. The fact that these are so light in colour and have rips in make them more acceptable to be worn in the sunshine (in my opinion...) so I thought they would be a great addition to my wardrobe and grabbed them!

Overall I was very happy with my purchases, and I hope that my charity shop posts help those of you who are tempted by the idea of shopping in thrift stores, but are unsure if you're comfortable with the idea of looking through racks of second hand clothes.

For those of you who know me well you will know I am very anti germ and dirt, and I'm overly clean and tidy. This should fill you with a bit of confidence, because you should know if charity stores were unclean, or untidy, I would be the last person you'd find in there. Sometimes I know smaller independent charity shops can be a little unclean or unpleasant, but there are certain standards for large charities to hold their stores to now, so when you go inside they're like any other shop. All the clothes are cleaned, and hung by size, style and gender so it's really easy to find what you're after if you have something specific in mind. There aren't just racks of messy and dirty clothes to root through, it's all sorted before the best bits are put out for sale in the shop, and any damaged donations get recycled at big textile plants to maximise the usage of donated items. Nothing goes to waste, which I think is a lovely thing to think about. The best thing is, if you're a vintage lover, charity stores are always the best places to go to find cheap, and unique vintage pieces from house clearances and people cleaning out their old relatives attics! Even better, they're usually very cheaply priced because the charities think because they're clearly old or unbranded, people will feel less inclined to buy them! So charity stores are great for bargains.

My favourite part of a charity store trip is when I find brand new items that I missed in shops but had wished I had gotten! It happens more often than you'd think, because at the end of seasons, the leftover items that don't get sold in the stores sale often get boxed up and given to charities to sell in their shops and written off as a companies charity donation for that year. It's a win win for everyone involved!

Anyway, I hope you enjoy this post, as always I would love to hear your guys thoughts. Feel free to get in touch with the contact details at the top of the page.

-Holly xx

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation

Without a doubt, this is my favourite foundation on the market at the moment.

I have been shopping around recently, as I wasn't happy with my most recent foundation purchase, so I went along to my nearest Estee Lauder counter at my local Debenhams store and asked to be colour matched.

I came out as a 2C3 Fresco, and the lady applied the product to my face for me to see how it looked. I was pleased with the overall look, it didn't leave my skin looking too caked on. I did feel I looked a bit too tanned for my liking, but I think this was down to the amount of bronzer that the lady applied over the top of the product.

After applying the product myself at home as part of my usual make up routine, I found I was left with more of a natural, warm glow. However, I did decide that in future I would go for a shade lighter, as there was still an orange looking line where my neck met my chin, and that is NEVER a good look! This did disappear with some blending and pale powder applied over the top, but in all honesty, whenever I go to get colour matched at make up counters, the workers ALWAYS seem to recommend a colour that ends up being a shade or two too dark for my fair complexion.

This product is a full coverage foundation, with SPF 10, but it is very lightweight and doesn't feel like you're wearing make up at all! It applies smoothly, and very easily, and a little goes a long way which is great considering its a little less affordable than other foundations on the market.

The product comes in a square, frosted glass, 30ml bottle and each application can last up to 15 hours.

I use a beauty blender to apply my foundation usually but I decided to try and apply it with a stippling brush as well just to see how it would look. The product worked wonders both times, and left my skin looking fresh, healthy and very natural.

The price may be a little steep if you're looking for more of a budget beauty buy, but to be honest it is worth every penny of the £30 price tag. A little really does go a long way, but if you feel you can be swayed, or you want to treat yourself and you're still not certain, pop along to your local Estee Lauder counter so you can try it out for yourself and see what you think! One of the advisors will be able to help you with your colour match, and any questions you may have about Estee Lauder products, and if you ask they will be able to provide you with a small free sample of your colour for you to try out at home.

Let me know what you guys think!

-Holly xx 

Friday, 3 June 2016

Maybelline ColorSensation Vivid Matte Liquid & Make Up Revolution Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner

Today I decided to try out some of the new make up products I purchased this week. Both were super affordable, and purchased from easily reached stores such as Asda and Superdrug.

The first product was Maybelline ColorSensation Vivid Matte Liquid, in the shade 45 Possessed plum. This product is new out, and usually retails at £6.99, but was on offer for £4 in Asda as an introductory price. Matte liquid lipsticks are super popular at the moment, but the ones I use are the more expensive ones on the market such as those sold by Dose of Colors, Jeffree Star and Lime Crime. I did try a cheap one by MUA at Superdrug, but the quality of it was so poor that I threw it away and vowed to stick with more reputable (and more expensive!) brands.

I lined my lips before applying this product to reduce the likeliness of bleeding, but alas to no avail. The product lasted well, I applied it before a shopping trip with my mum and it stayed on the whole evening, but I did not eat or drink in that time. I must have been wearing the product for about 4 or 5 hours, which was quite a long while, but as I say, I didn't eat or drink in that time so there wasn't a whole lot for the product to withstand. When I got home I ate, but by the end of my meal, my lips were needing almost a full reapplication. All that remained of the product was around the edges of my mouth where I had lined with lip liner and an anti bleed stick.

Overall I thought the product was of an okay quality for £4, I would have been less impressed if I had paid £6.99. If you can't wait a few weeks for shipping from Lime Crime, Jeffree Star or Dose of Colors, then this product would be a good cheap and easily located alternative for an evening, but I would rather pay more and have a product of a higher quality that I know will last the distance.

All in all I would rate this product a 5/10.

Another product I purchased this week that I decided to try out today was Make Up Revolution Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner. I picked this up because I was looking to purchase a new waterproof liquid liner, as I recently discovered my Soap and Glory Supercat liner isn't waterproof, and with allergies as terrible as mine, it was becoming more than a little inconvenient. Despite the range being very affordable, I had only heard great things about Make Up Revolution Products so when I saw the stand in Superdrug, I picked up a few things to try. One of them was the liner, and overall I was very pleased with it.

When I picked it up in store it had no price label on the shelf, so you can imagine how overjoyed I was to find it was only £1.50 when I went to pay! When I opened it I was a little disappointed to find the applicator was a plastic pointed rod but most of my dismay was due to the fact I have very shaky hands and I personally find this type of applicator very difficult to use. Once I got going and my wings began to take shape, I did find it a little easier to use, but in the end I did reach for my Supercat liner just to neaten up the tips.

The quality of this product is absolutely amazing, and for such an affordable price, I will definitely be buying another! It stayed on without budging all day, but when I went to take the product off before bed, I just used my usual Garnier Micellar water on a cotton pad, and it came off without difficulty.
The pigmentation was amazing, and the product dried to a matte finish without looking dry or cracking. I would just prefer to have it in a double size container as I feel I would get through the product quickly in its current portion size. So simply for laziness reasons of not wanting to have to keep going back to Superdrug, I would prefer a larger version. Apart from the applicator, I could not fault this product at all.

All in all I would rate this product 8/10

I hope you found this short post useful, I just thought I'd share my own thoughts and ideas on these products. So hopefully if you were looking to try these yourself, you may find my thoughts to be of some use to you! Too many times in the past I've bought a new product from stores and bought into the amazing promises the brand makes, but then later been disappointed with the quality, only to find if I had looked online before purchasing, lots of people have reviewed the product more honestly.
As always, I would love to hear what you think, you can contact me with the details at the top of the page.

-Holly xx 

Clinique Beyond Perfecting Foundation and Concealer

I was looking to try a new full coverage foundation recently as I was coming to the end of my infallible 24 hour. I was near a Clinique counter and saw their new beyond perfecting foundation and concealer product had just been released so I decided to give it a try.

I had the girl working there match up my skin colour to find the right shade for me, and then I purchased some.

I've been using this product for little over a month now and if I'm honest, I am very disappointed with it for a number of reasons. During the last couple of weeks I've been pretty busy, so I have worn a full face of make up most days during this time. Because of this I have had more time to really focus on the product.

My first issue is pretty major, and that is the fact that the colour is all wrong for me. At the time of purchasing it, I remember thinking the colour of the product looked pretty dark, but I thought nothing more of it because surely I should be able to trust the advice of the professional who matched me, right? WRONG.

I am very pale, and so usually I am the lightest or second lightest shade in most foundation brands. I was sold shade 02 Alabaster, and when I apply it to my skin, I go a pale shade of orange and there are very clear lines around my neck and jaw where the product ends and my skin begins despite lots of vigorous blending.
This in itself was very disappointing, especially considering the product cost £25, and there was no easy way for me to try and return it to a store, because there are no Clinique stores very local to me. Also, I had obviously had to open and use the product to find out it was all wrong for me, so that in itself would have likely caused more issues.

The product is very thick, as can be expected with a full coverage concealer, so a little goes a long way, but needs a lot of blending to keep it looking more natural and less caked on.

Due to the nature it is good at covering spots and other unwanted blemishes, but I personally found that once I applied any powder face products over the top such as bronzer and plain face powder, it did not give my skin a natural or flattering look at all. I use a powder highlighter as well, and that looked fine when used over this product.

In order to not waste this product, I recently started mixing it with a little of my other foundations, one that is a bit too pale for me, and this way I can match my shade perfectly. However, this isn't always convenient, especially if I am in a rush one day.

Once I have used up this product, I will not be purchasing it again. However, this is just personally how I found it to be, and I know I have liked other Clinique products in the past, so I will be a returning customer in the future I am sure.

I hope you found this helpful and if  you have any further questions, feel free to comment below or contact me via my contact details at the top of the page.

If you're still interested in trying this product for yourself, if you visit your local Clinique counter and speak to one of the assistants, they can apply the product to your face for you to see if you like it and if you're still unsure, you can request a small sample to take home. This would probably be my recommendation so that you can try the product in your normal routine in case you decide you don't like it, rather than be stuck with a full sized, unwanted product like me!

-Holly xx 

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Grounded Face and Body Coffee Scrub

I recently discovered a new face and body scrub by a UK company called Grounded that I have absolutely fallen in love with!

It's made from crushed up coffee beans, and its absolutely fantastic at exfoliating your skin to perfection, leaving your face feeling smooth, soft and amazingly fresh.

The product is packed full of vitamins and minerals to help promote healthy skin, and the scrub itself boots circulation, leaving your skin with a healthy glow!

I tried the chocolate orange scented scrub, but they come in a variety of other scents such as sweet orange, tea tree & lemon, coconut and lime, coconut, and grapefruit (which is the one that is calling to me next!....)

The company currently have a quick and easy quiz on the website at the moment to tell you exactly which of their products is best suited for your skin, so if you're unsure or simply interested to find out, head over to their website and have a look!

Their products are available directly on their website, or alternatively, are stocked online and in some Boots stores.

The company also stock other wonderful products such as nourishing hair masks, and beautifully scented lip balms, all of which are perfect for keeping you looking and smelling your best this summer!

Prices range from £3 to £15, so are very affordable, and well worth the money!

I have tried many different skin care products over the years and was over joyed to find Grounded face scrubs. The quality of the products are unrivaled and are made from natural ingredients, none of which are tested on animals!

So if you're feeling like a change or are just always on the look out for great quality skincare products, Grounded is definitely the next place you should look!

Let me know what you think!

-Holly xx