Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Review: Balance Me Cleanse and Smooth Face Balm

I recently tried the Balance Me Cleanse and Smooth Face Balm when it came free with this months Marie Claire magazine (which is still in store, so run out and get it!). As an award winning product, it appears impressive straight off the bat, having won the Beauty Bible Anti-Ageing Award. I can find nowhere on the packaging or website which states this product to be anti-ageing but this is always a bonus if it has proved to be!

This balm retails at £4 for a 15ml tube, £10 for a 40ml tube, and £20 for a 125ml tube which is not particularly cheap for a makeup remover but is fairly affordable for what feels like a more high end product, especially since you really do not need to use a lot to remove your makeup. It is a 100% natural, oil-based product which is recommended for normal to dry skin but, according to the Balance Me website, is also good for balancing oily skin and so shouldn't cause breakouts. It also does not contain parabens which, whilst I do not personally avoid, I understand some do due to links to breast cancer. Although this isn't completely proven, it's always something to bear in mind.

The balm contains oatmeal powder so it provides some exfoliation which is a great little bonus and perfect for its target audience of dry-skinned girls. This exfoliation is mild enough for use around the eyes and I did not find it to be at all rough around my eyes or on the rest of the skin (my skin is quite sensitive). I was particularly impressed with how it removed makeup around my eyes, which was achieved with very quickly and easily by gently rubbing my eyes with my fingertips. I had no problem removing my mascara which is always something I can find rather tricky to take off at the end of the day.

Overall, I can certainly see myself using this product as an everyday makeup remover as a far quicker and simpler alternative to my current routine of using a separate eye makeup remover and cleanser, of which I have to use tonnes of to remove every bit of makeup. One thing I really do not like about this product is the smell which I find to be a bit repellent and lingered on the skin after using. However, this is more of a personal criticism (I have known others to love the smell), and this is not something that would stop me from repurchasing it.

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Monday, 28 July 2014

Liebster Award #2 x6

Long post alert! Don't feel like you have to read this!

Since my first Liebster Award post, I have been nominated for quite a few Liebster awards (six to be exact) which I am very excited about as it's lovely to know these people read and like my blog! The people that nominated me are Sophie from Sophie Ballinger, Natalie Ann from Petal Poppet Blogs, Beth Searle from Sometimes the Stars, Jo from Caledonian Kitty, Miriam from The Funky Path, Tilsie from Beauty and Lifestyle. Thankyou to all those lovely ladies for nominating me, you should definitely check out their blogs after you've read this post as their pretty amazing!

I really wanted to do all of these awards but didn't want to overload you guys with Liebster award posts so I'm combining them into one! However, despite this I'm only going to nominate one set of 11 bloggers and write one set of 11 questions as it would otherwise be an an extremely long post and I simply don't follow that many bloggers! For the same reasons, this will also be my last Liebster Award post as I don't want it to get to boring for you guys so no more nominations please!

> Thank the blogger who nominated you.
> Write 11 random facts about yourself.
> Answer the questions they set you.
> Nominate 11 bloggers with under 200 followers to answer your own set of questions.

11 Facts About Me
1) I started learning to fly a plane before even learning to drive a car...priorities!
2) I have a YouTube channel! So you could go check that out if you wanted ;)
3) I was born 19 minutes past midnight on the 19th of May and my little brother was born 19 minutes past 11!
4) I still watch cartoons cos I'm a child!
5) My favourite is Invader Zim!
6) I was raised on 1960s music on my mothers jukebox and have a collection of old Jackie magazines from the 70s.
7) If you give me food, you're instantly my best friend.
8) I hate water. I've barely drank it in years because it makes me feel sick. I live on sugar free fizzy drinks...I'm dieing young, aren't I?
9) I hate talking to people on the phone. It truly terrifies me and I will avoid it whenever possible.
10) I spend 99% of time on YouTube.
11) I don't understand how people can like spicy food. I like to be able to actually taste my food.

Sophie's Questions
1)What are your top 5 books? Urgh, I can't choose! Urm...Handle With Care by Jodi Picoult, Wicked by Gregory Maguire, Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister by Gregory Maguire, Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn, and Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.
2) Pastel or brights? Oooh, can I not say both? It depends really but most of the time, probably pastels.
3) Is there/What's the meaning behind your blog name? Elesaurus is actually something my boyfriend used to call me. Childish, I know, it was a weird joke we had. I used that for this blog because I really don't have the imagination to think of anything else!
4) What is your most used emoji? I don't really use emojis...for one thing I am one of those rare people that don't have an iPhone.
5) What one make up item couldn't you survive without? Mascara! It just finishes off your makeup and I think people look odd with a full face of makeup but no mascara.
6) Your favourite lesson at school is/was? History! I love that everything links together and tells a story so it isn't just a random collection of facts. I also had the most amazing history teacher who would get so animated when he started talking about it and who had stories about everything! I swear he must have been all over the world!
7) Do you prefer your hair up or down? Down! I don't feel like I have the face for having my hair up, I just look weird and chavy. I'm trying to get used to wearing it up though since it's Summer.
8) Are you a list maker? I really am! But I never do anything with them! I will list and plan stuff but never actually abide by the list/plan.
9) What clubs/groups have you ever been a part of? I haven't really been in any clubs. I was in a jazz dance club briefly when I was in primary school but I was way to clumsy and uncoordinated. All it taught me was how to tie my shoelaces!
10) (Your family are safe), you can only save one thing from your burning house. What would it be? Probably all the pictures I have stuck up on my wall which my boyfriend drew for me. Gah, I sound cringey XD
11) Favourite nail varnish colour? Royal blue! I think it's very striking against my pale skin tone.

Natalie Ann's Questions
1) What is your favourite season and why? Autumn. I'm no good with extreme weather so those inbetween seasons are perfect for me. Yep, I'm a wimp. I do love the snow and warm coats of Winter though.
2) If you had three wishes, what would you wish for? I would wish to get in to university, a few million quid both for myself and also to pay off my mothers debts and buy the crumbling mansion she dreams of, and lastly to be eternally skinny no matter what I eat. Cos I'm a vain bitch!
3) Why did you start blogging? I started blogging to be doing something productive during Summer and because I loved reading blogs myself.
4) Which other bloggers are you currently loving? I really love Miranda from Little Gold Pocket Watch. She writes outfit posts with amazing photography and she has great sense of style!
5) What is one interesting fact about yourself? Ooh, I don't really think of myself as a very interesting person. Especially after this post, I don't think there's anything more to say about me!
6) If you could travel to anywhere in the world, where would you go and why? There's no one place really. I'd just love to travel everywhere!
7) What is the one thing that you cannot live without? My phone. It's pretty worrying how attached people get to them, isn't it? >.<
8) What is your favourite movie? Breakfast at Tiffanys
9) What is your favourite song? That changes constantly.
10) Describe yourself in one word. Childish
11) What is your favourite childhood memory? I used to dance in the fireplace...I was a weird kid.

1) What is your favourite pick-me-up album? The Family Jewels by Marina and the Diamonds because I know the name to every single song.
2) What is a product that you recommend to everyone? MUA eyeshadows. They're so pigmented.
3) If money was no object, what would you buy? Christian Louboutins. 
4) What is your go to outfit? Just any of my dresses because you can just throw on a dress and it's your whole outfit without having to think about matching things up. I'm lazy!
5) What is one thing you would love to do before you die? I'm not sure. I don't really have a lot of ambitions or know where I want to be. I'm in that inbetween stage where you're not a school-kid and not really an adult. Feeling pretty lost, not gunna lie XD
6) Have you ever been in love? I think so.
7) Why did you start blogging? See previous answer :)
8) What would you be doing if you weren't doing what you're doing now (work/school-wise)? Well I'm not really doing anything right now as it's the Summer holidays. I'll be finding out soon if I'm going to uni to be a primary school teacher and my back-up plan for that is to take a gap year in which I take an apprenticeship as a teaching assistant. 
9) What is your favourite movie? See previous answer :)
10) What do you do to treat yourself? Just eat anything unhealthy...and I treat myself on a daily basis.
11)  What is your favourite band, that no-one has ever heard of? I don't really know any that no-one has heard of at all. All the less popular ones I like seem to be getting more successful which is great for them!

1)What country are you from? England
2) Costa Coffee, Starbucks or Cafe Nero? Starbucks.
3) What was your last blog post about? Primark makeup, cos I'm a cheapskate. I was actually pleasantly surprised by it though.
4) Who's blog did you last read? Katie's Beauty Blog
5) What's your fave time of the year? See previous answer :)
6) Last movie you saw? Dirty Dancing
7) Do you collect anything?, if, what and why? I collect crystals which I keep on my windowsill because my grandma has a massive display cabinet full of them which always fascinated me as a little kid.
8) Do you prefer shopping online or going out shopping? I love window shopping online but for actual shopping I prefer to be able to try things on and actually hold my purchases.
9) Worst customer service experience? Honestly, I can't remember >.<
10) What was the last book you read or are currently reading? I'm currently reading War of the Worlds
11) What was the last product you reviewed? I recently wrote a group review of Primark makeup but my most recent in depth review of an individual product was of Seventeen Phwoarr Paint.

1) What's your biggest fear? Time. I'm terrified of suddenly being old and decrepit and feeling the approach of death. Quarter life crisis! Whoop!
2) One life-changing makeup tip? If you're invited to a last minute night out and you don't have time to do anything fancy with your makeup, bright lipstick makes it look like you've put in so much effort than you have.
3) What's your most unhealthy habit? Binge eating junk
4) How many lipsticks do you own? Only about five at the moment. I've only recently become a lipstick person.
5) If you could only use one foundation for the rest of your life, which one would it be? I haven't found my perfect foundation yet. I'm so pale that most high street foundations look orange on me.
6) Are you happy right now? Fairly I suppose.
7) Most recent book you read and would you recommend it? Well I'm currently re-reading War of the Worlds and yes, of course I'd recommend it! It's a classic!
8) Which was your best holiday ever? Probably going to Tenerife as it's the first holiday I really remember.
9) Are you organised or rather chaotic? Oh I'm far from organised.
10) What's one thing you want to achieve in the nearer future? I hope to get into university. I'll be finding out in August so fingers crossed!
11) What's your favourite part about your makeup or skincare routine? When it's done? Let's face it, we waste a lot of time on our makeup, don't we girls?

1) Do you have an animal, if so what is it and what is it's name? Three chickens called Betty, Audrey, and Harriet.
2) What is it that you collect? See previous answer :)
3) Do you have an obsession? Does shopping count?
4) What is your favorite movie and why? See previous answer :)
5) What is your most used item in your closet? Currently my high-waisted shorts.
6) Do you have a special tradition? Pain au chocolats for breakfast every birthday and Christmas!
7) Who is your role model? I don't think I really have one. Is that bad? >.<
8) Do you have a fashion inspiration? There's no-one in particular, I'm inspired and influenced by everyone around me.
9) How would you describe your style? Fairly feminine since I live in dresses.
10) With witch disney princess do you relate to the most? I'm not really sure I can relate to any beautiful cartoon princesses with perfect lives to be honest!
11) What is always in your bag? My phone?

I Nominate...

11 questions for the people I'd nominated
1) What's your favourite thing about blogging?
2) What camera do you use for your blog photography?
3) How do you find things to write posts about?
4) Do your friends/ family know about your blog?
5) What blogger inspires you the most?
6) What hobbies do you have (besides blogging of course)?
7) Favourite disney film?
8) Have you/ would you ever branch out to YouTube?
9) Favourite show as a kid?
10) What's your best memory?
11) Do you have any hidden talents?

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Friday, 25 July 2014

P.S. I Love...

...Primark Makeup!

For a little while now, Primark has stocked makeup under the name 'P.S. I Love...' which I had not tried until now due to the lack of testers and due to my being sceptical of the quality of Primark makeup. However, after the success of my first eBay jewellery order, I thought this makeup was worth a try too! My local Primark doesn't stock the full range and I have seen makeup products on other peoples blogs that I could not find in store but there was a pretty decent selection for me to choose from and I'm generally pleased with what I was able to pick up. These products are extremely affordable, with the prices ranging from £1 to £2.50.

Lipstick - £1
The colour of this lipstick is very deceptive under both the store lighting and in these photos, appearing to be a bright red  when it is in fact a fairly bright pink-y colour. Luckily, I do love this shade and it goes very well with my skin tone but don't buy it expecting it to be red! I love the formula of this lipstick which is very opaque, smooth, and unlike a lot of lipsticks, is not drying. I've also found that, despite making a mess over my food and glasses when I ate or drank, there were no signs of wear on my lips themselves and it lasted very well for most of the day. At the base of the lipstick container is a little pot containing lipgloss of the same shade if you want more of a glossy finish. I initially thought this little pot contained lipstick rather than gloss for applying with a lip brush, as with MUA lipsticks but this was not the case. I doubt I'll get much use of the gloss as I prefer more of a matte look but it's a handy little addition.

Volumising Mascara - £1
I am absolutely in love with the brush of this mascara - it does not pick up too much product and separates my lashes extremely well with no clumps! The mascara itself didn't do anything particularly amazing to my lashes but would make a perfect everyday mascara. One thing I am very impressed by is the lasting power which is something I am usually disappointed by. I'm not sure why but most mascaras that people swear by, even waterproof ones, seem to end up smudged underneath my eyes after a few hours. As such, finding one that stays put is always amazing for me, and this is one such mascara. For this reason I can definitely see this mascara working its way into my everyday makeup routine.

Moisturising Lip Gloss Crayon - £1.50
The colour of these crayons is extremely sheer, even in this red crayon, so I really can't imagine that the lighter pink-y colours would show up very much at all. However, one wouldn't really be looking for anything opaque in a lip crayon and it's perfect for a subtle, everyday lip. Primark claims this product to be moisturising and I've certainly found this to be very much the case. However, I would not describe this as a 'gloss' crayon but more as a balm.

Nail Polish - £1
This polish comes in a fair few shades from what I have seen but was unfortunately only available in a pink and duck egg shade in my local Primark. As you can see, I unsurprisingly opted for the duck egg shade (I have far too much of a weakness for these kinds of colours). This was the only product I bought which I found to be a disappointment. Although the colour is beautiful, it is incredibly sheer and, even after three layers, was not completely opaque. I also found the brush to be far too big and difficult to use, making it impossible not to make a mess all around my nails which I then had to clean up. Overall, I really struggled to apply this polish and would not repurchase it.

Manicure Set - £2.50
Technically this manicure set is part of the 'Embellish' range rather than the 'P.S. I Love...' range but it's still from Primark so I'm sticking it in this post anyway. I found this polish to be so much better than the P.S. I Love... one, with a smaller, more usable brush, and a more opaque formula. I thought the beads went perfectly with the nail polish and made a great feature nail. The set also came with a funnel, making it much easier to pour leftover pearls back into the pot which I'm pretty pleased about as it's something I struggle to do with my Ciate nail pearls. One criticism I do have is that the nail polish seems to dissolve the colour on the pearls ever so slightly (so be careful when putting on the topcoat) but generally I cannot wait to show off my nails with this set!

Have you tried anything from the Primark P.S. I Love... range? What did you think?

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Saturday, 19 July 2014

eBay Jewellery Haul

As I'm sure you all know, eBay is a great source of bargains for all us cheapskates and broke girls. However, I've always been very wary of buying things from eBay as one cannot see them in person before buying them and I have heard many stories of people receiving items of a completely different quality to that shown in the photos. I'm still not sure that I'd buy clothes off eBay quite yet but, after reading a post by Laura from LaurasAllMadeUp showing the things she had bought from this seller, I couldn't resist buying a few things as, at such a low price, it seemed worth the risk that they might be shoddy quality. 

Everything I bought cost between 99p and £1.50 and arrived extremely quickly; these items were shipped from China and the estimated delivery time was 2 - 4 weeks yet they arrived in only a week. I'm not sure if this is normal or if I got lucky but either way I'm pretty impressed! They are all pretty good quality and look like they cost much more than they did although they're still obviously very much costume jewellery. There are still quite a few things I've got my eye on but I'm resisting for now - just because it's cheap doesn't mean I should feel the need to buy EVERYTHING. I don't need that much jewellery. Or so I'm trying to tell myself.

Faux Leather Braided Watch - Looks lovely on but is a little inflexible and wont fit those with larger wrists.

Lace Collar Necklace - Probably my favourite purchase although I may shorten the chain somehow as it's a little long.

White Daisy Chain Necklace - Arguably the tackiest, cheapest looking thing I bought as it's very plasticy
but I love it! and for 99p you can't go wrong.

Have you made any eBay purchases recently? What sellers do you recommend buying from?

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Thursday, 17 July 2014

DIY Makeup Organisation

I recently made these makeup drawer dividers after realizing my drawer was a complete mess, deciding that it was high time to sort it out. I created sections in which to put different products by cutting up boxes (mainly cereal boxes) and, after having found a way to arrange them in my drawer, covered them in wrapping paper. As you can see, I ran out of the polka dot wrapping paper and so one section is different from the rest but I kinda like that it's different. 

Making these sections took me much of the day as one really underestimates how long it takes to completely cover each box in wrapping paper. Therefore, although I'm really happy with how they turned out I'm not sure that it's something I would do again, as one can buy drawer dividers pretty cheaply and save a lot of time. However, if you have a lot of time to waste and want personalised sections of different sizes that you can make exactly fit in the drawer, it could still be worth making your own.

I threw away a lot of my makeup so my little stash has been severely reduced, yet it's still a little bit of a struggle to fit everything in; this is not inclusive of my everyday makeup and the nail polish section is completely full! My makeup collection is ever-growing so this is really more of a short term solution until I go to university (assuming I have achieved high enough grades to attend). However, my makeup is now so much more organized and easy to find and my makeup drawer looks a lot prettier now if  do say so myself.

Would you ma

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Monday, 14 July 2014

Review: Seventeen Phwoarr Paint

Please ignore the gross fingerprints - I kinda had to use the concealer to be able to review it, guys! I did take some photos prior to using it but they were unfortunately lost so I'm making do!

I haven't done an awful lot of reviews on this blog and the last one was two and half weeks ago when I reviewed H&M Makeup Brushes. So today I am reviewing, in case you hadn't already worked it out, the Seventeen Phwoarr Paint Concealer. I don't actually usually use Seventeen makeup but, after being recommended a concealer by a reader, I popped into Boots for a look. This isn't actually the concealer I was recommended (and I will still try it!) but I may have gotten a little bit distracted.

This concealer is £5.49 from Boots which is slightly more expensive than my trusty Collection concealer but still very cheap, especially for a heavy duty concealer. It comes in a little purse-friendly pot with a mirror which is perfect for touch-ups. It's the packaging which I think really wins over my usual concealer as the pot means you're able to get every bit of product as opposed to those concealers packaged in tubes where one has to scrape around with the applicator as the product runs out, meaning there's always still a little left when you throw it away. However, this packaging means there will be no wastage and thus you'll completely be getting your money's worth. 

The concealer itself has a very smooth texture and, being high coverage, very thick. The thickness does make it a little harder to blend and it's better applied with your fingers by patting it on the skin rather than with a concealer brush. It has a very good coverage as one would expect from a heavy duty concealer so very good for us naturally pale girls with prominent dark under eye shadows. Also, despite being heavy duty, it does not have too much of a 'cakey' appearance on the skin. This product had no claims of lasting all day but I still found it to do a pretty good job, keeping my dark circles hidden with minimal top-ups. 

One criticism I do have of this concealer is the very small variety of shades and it is available only in the shades 'fair' and 'medium'. Therefore, you're unlikely to be able to get an exact match to your skin tone (unless perhaps you mix the two shades) and this isn't a concealer for darker skinned girls. Seventeen really need to start making more shades! This concealer will also oxidise after a short time and become darker and more orange if it is worn without foundation and/or powder so do not wear it on its own unless you want orange patches under your eyes which will look ridiculous and make it very obvious that you're wearing concealer! However, this is true for most high street concealers (including my Collection concealer) and I doubt one would wear a heavy duty concealer without foundation and powder so I'm not holding this against it.

Overall I really love this concealer and definitely recommend it for those looking for a more heavy duty concealer that is still affordable. Whilst I have not been using it everyday, I've loved using it on nights out when I'm looking for a better coverage. I have been applying it under my foundation and then using the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer over my foundation, and by combining these two concealers, I am able to completely hide my dark circles.

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Saturday, 12 July 2014

Leibster Award

I've seen this award floating around the internet and was recently nominated for it by the lovely Kim and Kyle from Kim+Kyle - check out their post here. It's really more of a tag than an award and the first I've been tagged for so I'm pretty excited for this post, thankyou Kim and Kyle for nominating me!

> Thank the blogger who nominated you.
> Write 11 random facts about yourself.
> Answer the questions they set you.
> Nominate 11 bloggers with under 200 followers to answer your own set of questions.

11 Facts About Me
1) I am a vegetarian and have been for so long I can't even remember the taste of meat.
2) I hate being called Ellie. The only people I allow to are my boyfriend and my little brother.
3) I am the most clumsy, careless person you'll meet. I've electrocuted myself with hair straighteners and lost countless keys and phones.
4) I got a phone for my birthday a few years ago as a replacement to the one I'd previously lost. I lost it 9 days later.
5) I never had braces. I have a gap inbetween my front teeth and could have had it closed up but I didn't. I actually like it. I think it gives me character. Plus going through months of braces for something so minor? No thanks.
6) I have central heterochromia (a yellow ring around the pupil of my eyes).
7) I sing along to the theme songs of every TV show that has one with lyrics.
8) I sometimes randomly feel the need to bake...and it's always cupcakes.
9) I have an older half brother on my father's side and a younger half brother on my mother's side so I'm the eldest, youngest and middle child all at once.
10) If I'm nervous about something I'll practice conversations in my head before I have them and replay the conversation in my head after it's occurrence, imagining what would have happened if I'd said what I now wish I had in retrospect.
11) I have pyjama days more often than I should.

1) What/ Who inspired you to start blogging?
I read a few blogs, like Zoella's and wanted to feel like I was doing something productive on pyjama days and in the Summer holidays, during which time I'll likely be doing very little.
2) What is the very thing you must always have?
My phone. It feels weird going out without it! You're whole life is on your phone.
3) What do you want be when you're older?
I want to work with younger children, preferably as a primary school teacher, and will hopefully be training to do so soon.
4) What is your favourite Starbucks drink?
A Mocha or a Mocha Frappuccino Light with whipped cream! Nom! I have a very sweet tooth.
5) What do you prefer? Summer or Winter?
I can't stand the heat of Summer as I'm completely intolerant to it and it makes me feel ill. Therefore, I prefer the Winter and really love the snow. I do love the light in Summer though, which makes everything look more beautiful and I love that the days last longer.
6) Who do you look up to in terms of fashion?
There's no one person. I'm inspired and influenced by everyone around me in regards to fashion as well as everything else in life.
7) Are you a Math wiz or a Science wiz?
Oh gosh, neither. I did fairly well in both of them at GCSE but have completely failed my Biology A Level. I do not at all have a scientific or mathematic brain, I much prefer English and History than cold facts.
8) Who is your favourite YouTuber?
Klaire de Lys. Her makeup tutorials may not be wearable but they're so creative and beautiful and unlike the majority of YouTube makeup tutorials, which all seem to be rather similar
9) What is your nationality?
I'm English.
10) Where do you live?
Unsurprisingly I live in England.
11) Do you prefer jeans or shorts?
Both! Obviously it depends on the season.

I Nominate...
11 questions for the people I nominated
1) Which of your blog posts are you most proud of and why?
2) What makeup product could you not live without?
3) Do you ever get bloggers block? If so, how do you get over it?
4) What's your go-to hairstyle?
5) What's your favourite high street store and why?
6) What is your favourite book?
7) What's your favourite Summer trend?
8) Liquid, gel, or felt tip liner?
9) Product you most regret buying?
10) Most embarrassing thing you've ever done?
11) What's your star sign?

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Thursday, 10 July 2014

July Magazine Freebies

Last month I wrote a post listing all the magazine freebies in June for those people who, like me, can be prone to buying a magazine for the freebie rather than for the magazine itself. People seemed to enjoy this breakdown and this is another month with amazing magazine freebies so, although I'm about a week late for this, here are this months magazine freebies to save you an unnecessary exploratory trip to the shops.

Price: £2
Freebie: Choose from Clinique Chubby Stick in Super Strawberry/ Woppin' Watermelon, Clinique High Impact Mascara or Clinique Dramatically Different Moisturizing Lotion. Worth over £30 together (because I'm sure everyone's going to buy 4 copies of this magazine).

Marie Claire 
Special price again this month: £2.50 (usually £3.70)
Freebie: Balance Me Luxury Face Mask or Cleansing Balm. Together worth £25.

Price: £4
Freebie: Rodial Lip Balm, worth £19.

Price: £3.70
Freebie: Lip and Cheek Tint in a choice of three shades or black mascara, together worth £60.

Price: £4
Freebie: Malin and Goetz travel set worth £10.

Price: £3.90
Freebie: Neal's Yard Remedies Geranium and Orange Hand Cream worth £10.

Price: £4.20
Freebie: One of four different L'Occitane Fragrances, together worth £32.

As with last month, I bought the two cheapest magazines, Glamour and Marie Claire. What magazine freebies are you loving this month and have I missed an from this list?

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Sunday, 6 July 2014

Butterfly Headboard

After cutting out the butterfly from an otherwise failed acrylic painting in an effort to salvage it, I've been spending a couple afternoons painting some little butterfly friends for it in order to decorate the head of my bed,which you may have noticed in the background of my YouTube videos. They aren't exactly perfect looking and they do get a tiny bit in the way when I'm laptop-ing in bed, leaning against my headboard, but I'm rather chuffed with how they've turned out and I think they go quite well with the floral theme of my feature wall. I imagine I'll make a few more in the holidays and they'll end up taking over my headboard so there may be some more pictures in a few weeks as my headboard evolves. Do you think I should keep adding to my butterflies? I'll almost definitely replace the purple one at any rate - it didn't turn out too well and just looks odd next to the others.

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Thursday, 3 July 2014

Summer Strawberry Picking

I went out strawberry picking today which means you get two posts in one day! Lucky you, right? No? Oh.
After my parents made me extremely jealous by visiting the lavender fields in Hitchin, I suggested we go strawberry picking and so we went to Bullcroft Farm and did just that! It was great fun despite the fact my arms and legs are all itchy now and I got stung by a few stinging nettles. I also discovered why they're called strawberries - they are grown with straw on the ground to absorb moisture...seems kinda obvious now and is probably something most of you already knew.

You're probably thinking "Hey, Eleanor. Didn't you say you hated strawberries in your TMI tag video?" and yes, I did. This was a fairly over-simplified explanation of my aversion to strawberries. I don't so much hate strawberries but more am very fussy about them. As such, I generally find supermarket strawberries completely revolting but these ones were absolutely delicious! So juicy and sweet and nom. A little more expensive than shop-bought strawberries which my dad was a bit surprised about but entirely worth it as they are so much nicer. We certainly got our moneys worth at any rate as I'm pretty sure I ate more than I collected! I just couldn't stop. Thinking about it, this is probably why they were more expensive, factoring in the fact that people will be snacking on them as they pick.

There was other fruit such which we didn't collect but may have sneaked a few and ate them. I really loved the tayberries which I'd never tried before and looked kinda like a cross between raspberries and blackberries. Strawberries were still definitely the best fruit there though!

There were also some cute little resident sheep which the farm apparently sell. I thought their enclosure was rather small but they seemed satisfied enough. I suppose they must also have a field to play in at different times.

P.S. A little advice to those planning on going strawberry picking - do not wear light clothes or you will get strawberry juice on your favourite shorts and pull this face just as your picture is being taken due to your dismay.

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Gel Liners: Maybelline Eye Studio VS Rimmel Scandaleyes

As someone that wears winged liner on a daily basis, it's important to me to have a good quality gel liner. For the past few years, I have always used 'Maybelline Eye Studio Liner' which I have found to be very good quality and as such have had no reason to use anything else. However, I recently bought the 'Rimmel Scandaleyes Gel Liner' due to there being a special offer on Rimmel products and my being out of my usual liner. I've been using this liner for a few weeks now and thought I'd share my thoughts on how it compares to my usual Maybelline one.

I'll start with something some people may find a bit trivial but I still think it's worth mentioning - the packaging. Both of these liners come in a little pot, however I find the Rimmel pot to be a lot more plastic-y and cheap feeling in comparison to the Maybelline pot, which seems to be made of glass. Both liners also come with brushes which are very similar and may be useful to some, although I prefer to use an angled brush. These brushes are not incorporated into the pot as with some eyeliners which, in my experience, leads to the gel liner drying up more quickly (perhaps more air gets to it?). This is also a positive due to the fact that this means the brushes are not inconveniently small and difficult to hold.

Both of these liners claim to be waterproof and last up to 24 hours. I have not found this to be the case with both being a little worn away at the inner and outer corners at the end of my school day (so around 9 hours after application). However, this is still pretty long lasting and despite being a bit worn away, these liners are smudge proof. However, I find that the Rimmel liner tends to dry up throughout the day until it begins to flake off and  Maybelline Eye Studio is the longer lasting of these two.  Whilst it prevents you from ending up with the panda look with smudged makeup under your yes, this staying power can be a downside. If you have only just applied either of these eyeliners, they are not going to come off so if you make a mistake, correct it before it dries. They are both fairly waterproof, although don't have unrealistic expectations - waterproof makeup is never completely waterproof. Don't expect to be able to have a shower and still have perfect makeup.

In terms of application, these liners both glide very smoothly on the lid and are very pigmented and opaque. However, I have found that more is needed of the Rimmel liner, perhaps due to a thicker formula, meaning you are using more product and thus are likely to run out quicker that one would with the Maybelline liner. This thicker formula also means that the Rimmel liner feels slightly heavier on the lid and could possibly be the cause of its tendency to flake off throughout the day.

Overall, Maybelline Eye Studio is still my favourite liner and is certainly the better of the two, although I was still impressed by the Rimmel Scandeleyes liner. Maybelline Eye Studio is only £1 more expensive at £7.99 and you are arguably getting more for your money due to the fact that, as previously mentioned, less is needed at a time, meaning it will last longer.

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