Monday, 16 October 2017

Welcome back to another hashtag #MAKEUPMONDAY my lovelies! I've been SO excited for this one. So guys, about three weeks ago, I received the most exciting PR package EVER. As in, I almost cried when I opened the box and my parents thought I had completely lost it. Low key a highlight of my year. Now, if you read my blog often, you'll know that it is by no means a secret just how much I love Charlotte Tilbury. SO when the lovely people at the CT PR team sent across a pretty purple box, it's safe to say I completely lost my shit, for want of a better phrase.

Charlotte's range has become somewhat of a cult classic in the blogosphere since it launched back in 2013, and it's easy to see why. With two decades worth of experience of making up the most iconic faces in the business, Charlotte finally placing all of her beauty expertise into products that we can all use was bound to be exciting. And, let's face it, the fact that it's all bottled up into beautifully vintage, 1920s-esque packaging which will look perfect on any wannabe-silver-screen-siren's vanity is the cherry on top.

But this isn't the only reason I love CT. See, it was actually Charlotte who inspired my love for makeup as an art form. It all sparked from an interview I watched conducted by Sali Hughes on her beauty channel series 'In the bathroom with'. I was instantaneously in awe of Charlotte's passion and enthusiasm for the industry, her wild stories of partying with some of the biggest names in the business, and her incredibly endearing eccentricity and giggle-inducing mannerisms. This resulted in me spending far too many hours watching her make tutorials on youtube, desperately trying to figure out how she managed to make the application of makeup appear quite so effortless, and I was immediately mesmerised by the way in which she would be able to enhance a woman's natural beauty, without masking her unique features, with the quick tip and tap of a brush.

Now enough of my wittering on, but I could seriously natter on about this lady for hours. To me, she is the ultimate girl boss: unapologetically glamorous and feminine, an accomplished makeup artist, business owner, wife and mother, and best believe she'll juggle all roles in a pair of five inch stiletto heels! I'm incredibly inspired by her talent and her work ethic, and I've come to fall in love with her 'beauty for everyone' brand philosophy. Whether you're a mum with five minutes before the school run, or a hungover uni student (ahemmm me lol), Charlotte has created high quality products that are easy for everyone to use.

So, now lets get onto the products. I have a whole range of CT bits that I've been testing out, enough pieces for a full face, almost! Unfortunately I don't have any base products for you today, but I'm hoping I'll be able to get my hands on the magic foundation, concealers and new contour wands very soon! In any case, let me give you a review of what I have so far. Now Charlotte Tilbury is undoubtedly a high end brand, so her prices are, well, pricey. Thus, I've been testing the products for the past couple of weeks and I've done a little tutorial for you, so saddle up kids, grab a cuppa, this is gonna be a longun'!



Click here for a more detailed post on my base routine. But once you've moisturised, prepped your skin with a primer, and set down your foundation and concealer, you're good to go! I also fill in my brows at this stage since, as Charlotte says, the 'brows are the pillars of the face', so I like to have them together early on.


  • So on with the main event, the eye look. First things first, swipe the prime shade across the lids to give a light shimmery sheen over the whole lid. 
  • I then take the 'enhance' shade and wash this over the lid building up the colour until I've reached my desired intensity. Since this was a more night out glam look, I went all out and built up a very opaque colour.
  • Pop your blending brush into your smoke shade and place this on the outer corner of the lid and across your crease, wing out the remainder of the product so it is brought out to a point similar to the shape you would create when doing a winged liner, then go back to blend everything seamlessly with the enhance shade placed previously. Lastly, run the smoke shade along the lower lid 
  • Then all that's left is that 'pop'. Use your finger to tap the 'pop' shade in the very centre of the eye over the enhance shade, and build to your desired finish. 
  • Go back into the prime shade with a smaller eyeshadow brush, and dab this on the tear duct area of the eye, and slightly along the inner third of the lower lash line, to open up the eye. 


  • Now the eyeshadow is all done, let's get sultry with the iconic feline flick. Use your eyeliner pen to draw a thin line across the lash line, then go ahead and create your wing, following the shape already created by the 'smoke' eyeshadow shade.
  • If you're wanting to go super sultry, go ahead and line the water lines with a black pencil - more is more, after all, girls!
  • All that's left now is to bring the eye look together with lashings of mascara. Coat your lashes with your 'full fat lashes' for a dramatic eye, and you'll have gorgeous, long, thick lashes - and there is not a falsie in sight!


  • Back to the base, go in with your sculpting palette, and carve in those cheekbones, girl! Suck in your cheeks, and as Charlotte says, follow the hollow. Proceed with a light hand, carefully building the product up to avoid any mishaps. 
  • Then get your fave blush and place this on the apples of the cheeks, remembering to drag it up and out to follow your contour, so you avoid 'clown syndrome'! 
  • For that final touch, pat your finger into your highlight shade and place this on the high points of the cheekbone, also add a little to the brow bone, tip of the nose and bow of the lip, if you're feeling extra fancy. 


  • Now to pull everything together with the lips. Get your pillow talk liner, and cheat your way to a plumper pout by tracing your lip line. If you're wanting your lipstick to last longer, than also go ahead and fill in the lips too. 
  • Take your Hepburn Honey, and lightly pat this into your lips, using your finger to smudge it into the lip liner below, or use a brush if you're wanting to be more precise. And there you have it, a perfect pout!



Now my first impression was that I was struck by just how much the texture reminded me of sudocrem. It's an incredibly thick texture, and I remember approaching it with fear the first time around, as I didn't see how something so thick would be suitable for the daytime. Well, my friends, I put my hands up and admit I was wrong. I dolloped a fair helping onto my skin, massaged it in, and let it sit for about 5-10 minutes before continuing my base. That's one bit of advice I would give, allow the product to sink into the skin for a few minutes before proceeding otherwise the products you place on top might just slip around too much.

Guys, this is going to sound strange, but a part of me actually didn't want to like this. Because it's £70.00, and I've never spent that on skincare before. But when you apply it, it just feels like luxury. It feels like an expensive cream and it's such a pleasure to have on. I now have to in some way make sense of the fact that I have fallen in love with a £70.00 moisturiser and that at some point in the future I'm going to have to repurchase it lol.

Now, although this is supposedly suitable for all skin types, I think this might be a little too overwhelming for those with very oily skin, for the day time at the least. My skin has become very normal, but I used to have the oiliest skin in the world, and I know I would have steered well clear of this as a daytime product, as it would never sink into skin, it would've simply exacerbated my oil more. If, however, you have any other skin type, or are looking for a night moisturiser, I think you would benefit from this. As the weather gets colder and the air gets drier, I'm going to start applying this more liberally and using it as almost a mask at night.

Overall, this is a product that is definitely worth the hype, folks. I haven't been using it for long enough to tell whether my skin has had any long term benefits, but I'd be more than happy to do a follow up post in a couple of months. So product one is a big thumbs up from me!

If you're into that 'glory, dewy skin look', then this is the product for you. Wonderglow claims to be a 'glow boosting, youth infused face primer', and whilst I can't vouch for the 'youth boosting' promise (hey, I'm 21 so if I need something youth boosting now I'm gonna be in serioussss trouble in 20 years time lol!), but what I can say is that they're spot on with the glow enhancing claim. The primer is a champagne gold tone, very warm, so I think it compliments my skin quite well. When applied to the skin under foundation, the enhanced radiance is very visibly clear. 

However, what I will say is I can't see myself wearing this every day. The are tiny glitter particles, which make it super pretty, but which would also make me refrain from using it on the daily. They can be sheered out to look more natural, but personally, I like my daily makeup to look more matte. For a night time look though, this is perfect, I always gravitate towards it when I am going a little heavier with my makeup, and am shookethhh by how good it makes my skin look. I'm not sure that it adds to the longevity of my makeup, by neither does it take away, so I would say that this product is far more about the look it gives to the skin, a glowy look, than it is for the application or wear time of your makeup. 

Overall, I really like this product, and I think it works very well with the magic cream. Do I think it is a necessity? No, but that's not because I don't like the formula, it's purely because I think if you're wanting an everyday primer, and you go quite simple like me, the glitter may be a bit much for you. I also don't think buying both the magic cream and wonderglow is absolutely necessary, if you're a bit more strapped for cash and only fancy investing in one, I'd go for the magic cream instead, which I think is far more multi purpose and beneficial skin-care wise, and getting wonderglow if you're either massively into glow makeup (you will dieeee for this!), or simply fancy treating yourself to something a little more special. 

I bought this about a year ago and absolutely love it, as you guys would have heard in my easy peasy eyeshadow tutorial here. The palette has one highlight and one bronzer shade, and is a cream version of Charlotte's much hyped 'bronze and glow' (which I desperately need to get my hands in, incidentally!) The shades have a creamy texture and blend nicely into the skin to create subtle definition to the cheekbones. I'm not really one for strong contouring on the daily, but instead use the product to add warmth to the skin whilst lightly sculpting the face. 

The highlight is very pretty too - I place a small amount on the high points of the cheekbones for a subtle sheen. What I love about this palette is that it's very warm toned, which is good for my skin tone, but is also very forgiving, so you're far less likely to get that 'I haven't washed in a while' makeup faux pas look! 
The cream palette is actually from the limited edition norman parkinson collection, but it's still available on CT.com!


Now, even though I do concede that there are some incredibly good drugstore mascaras out there, I'm a sucker for a high end one. To be completely honest, the vast majority of mascaras will work, as in, they'll do something for your lashes, whether it's lengthen a bit, or thicken a bit, and so on. But I think what sets apart high end mascaras is their ability to do all of these things at once, and also, the quality of the brush. These are two things that I think the full fat lashes excels in. Now, I'd already bought 'Legendary Lashes' and absolutely loved it (it's my holy grail alongside UD 'Perversion'), but now I have another contender in the mix. This mascara is absolutely perfect, particularly, for lengthening and separating your lashes. Honestly, when I showed my sister the difference between my eye with mascara and my eye without it, her jaw dropped - the lengthening is insane. She's now ordered me to get her a tube for christmas lol!

Now, what are the differences between Full fat lashes and legendary lashes? I'd say the latter gives more volume, and thickness - I definitely think if you're someone who goes all out with their mascara, than that is the one for you. I personally love both, and I'm not sure which I prefer - both are excellent. These mascaras are pricey, but if you're like me, and mascara is an absolute essential in your makeup routine, then you can never go wrong with splurging on one. I've often seen that mini trial size versions of legendary lashes are often available for free with orders over £40 on CT.com, I have one and they last for ages, so if you fancy giving one a trial first, that's the way to go!

Guys, onto the main event; I cannot tell you how excited I have been to have my hands on this palette. I actually specifically asked for this one to create a look with, seeing as I've had my eye on it for months and months. Now, I know many people would ordinarily shy away from such bright shades. But I'm the opposite, I've always absolutely loved blue and green shades, particularly on medium skin tones like mine, and I also think these colours really bring out brown eyes, which is quite hard to do.

Now this palette exceeded my expectations, and my expectations were pretty damn high. It's extremely pigmented and buildable, but I didn't really experience any fallout (only a small amount from the pop shade on my eyelashes, but I didn't even really need to clean this up.) I never bother priming my eyes, and these shadows lasted and remained perfect for the whole time I was wearing them (which was a good few hours), so have no fears about wearing these on a night out. The palette is extremely well thought out, as all the shades have enough difference so that you don't feel you don't have much variety, whilst simultaneously complimenting each other perfectly.

If you're also unsure of what to put where, the Charlotte has you covered by giving each shade a sort of 'function' in the set. It's therefore super easy to follow if you're an eyeshadow rookie, simply follow the steps which instruct you to 'prime, enhance, pop, and smoke'.

I doubt that I'd often use the 'prime' shade as that, I actually placed it in the inner corners and thought it looked beautiful there, and I'd use it as a shade on its own too. Despite there only being four colours, I actually think there are a lot of combination possibilities which can mean you can make the colours work for day or night. The palette is pricey, it's £39.00, but if you break that down, that's just under £10 per shadow, which is the price of a MAC single. I also think the formulas are absolutely stunning, so I would absolutely buy another.

I'm actually blown away by the quality of these shadows, and I've already got my eye on more - I'm thinking either 'The Vintage Vamp' or 'The Dolce Vita' next, for an autumnal look, just as soon as I'm a little less broke!

Now I'm a lover of a good feline flick, it's something I do on the daily, and until now, I've been loyal to my l'oreal superliner, but I'm really impressed with this eyeliner. I haven't actually heard much hype around this particular product from Charlotte's range, and I'm actually not usually a fan of pen eyeliners, I find they're usually a more wishy-washy black, but this one has surprised, and I think, converted me! I haven't found the pigment to be washed out, it's very black, which means you don't have to keep going over the line you've already drawn - a nightmare if you have a shaky hand! The nib is an absolute dream; it's very precise, and so creates the perfect wing. 

If you are someone who likes very thick winged liner this may not be the best product, since the very thin precise tip means you'll have to spend longer building it up (this wouldn't be something that bothered me personally considering the formula is so nice, though!). However, if you're a liquid liner veteran, or love very thin eyeliner lines, this is definitely for you. I have a fairly shaky hand and I didn't find this too hard to get precise. Overall, I actually think I'll be repurchasing this, which is honestly pretty shocking for me, because I don't ever steer away from my superliner! 

Ah, the infamous 'pillow talk'. I practically died when I saw this in my box. Girls, if you've been holding out on buying this, hold out no more. Get on CT.com, trek down to your department store, whatever, just buy this now. It is fabulousssss. It's unlike any lipliner I've used before, particularly in terms of texture. It has an almost waxy consistency, but does not drag when applied. I get the sense once again that this is a very well thought out product in terms of formula, as the waxier texture does seem to mean the product acts as a barrier stopping your lipstick from bleeding. 

Pillow talk is also a beautiful shade, I completely understand why this is cult, folks. It'll look perfect with any nude, I'd say its pretty comparable to MAC subculture perhaps, but with a tad more pink, and of course a lot less drying. If you're into your nudes, and have dry lips, you need this in your life - feel free to thank me later!

The lovely ladies at CT actually sent me the Matte revolution lipstick in 'Walk of Shame' which is a gorgeous autumnal berry shade, but I thought it'd look a little too much with this eye look, so I'm saving it for an autumnal makeup tutorial. So instead, I used 'Hepburn Honey', which I bought a few weeks ago, and absolutely love. It's an absolutely perfect nude (I'm an NC42/Nars Syracuse for reference) for my skin tone, and also goes perfectly with 'pillow talk'. What I love about these lipsticks is how comfortable they are on the lips. They're pigmented, sit well on the lips without making them dry, but they're not so moisturising that they slip about or wear off easily. In a day I reapplied once after I had eaten (which I always do anyway), and never really felt like I had to worry about what it looked like throughout the day.

It's not every day I feel like wearing a matte lip, especially when the weather starts to get colder as my lips get extremely dry, and so these lipsticks are perfect as they don't highlight any dry patches or suck out the moisture.

I'd say this shade is pretty comparable to MAC velvet teddy, so if you like those kylie jenner-esque nude shades but are looking for a less drying finish, I would definitely recommend this.

I now have my eye on 'Stoned Rose' and to be honest, so many other colours, they're just so beautiful!

So there you have it, my full review and tutorial - I told you it'd be a long one! It was difficult, because I was actually trying really hard to find some negatives, but there simply haven't been any! And to be fair, for the prices you pay, you wouldn't expect anything less than excellent, and so far, Charlotte hasn't disappointed. From the products I bought to the products I was sent, I would 100% recommend all of these products to anyone who is a lover of luxury makeup. The prices are high, but you do get your money's worth, and if, like me, you like to treat yourself to a little luxury every now and again, then, from the beautiful formulas to the perfect packaging, CT is the one for you.

I can't wait to see how Charlotte continues to extend her makeup line, I'm already lusting after the new liquid lips and the instant eye palette - I really really hope some money comes my way soon so I can get hauling lol! Of course, as soon as I can get ahold of any more products, I'll be back here writing up reviews!

Have you guys tried any CT products? What did you think of them? Do you have any recommendations for me? Leave me a comment below!

Until next time,
Bisous <3


Please note that whilst this post is not sponsored, all items marked with an asterisk (*) were kindly gifted to me by Charlotte Tilbury. As always all thoughts, opinions and creative direction are my own; please refer to my 'contact' page for my full disclaimer.


Friday, 6 October 2017


I'm crossing the threshold
From the ordinary world
To the reveal of my heart. 
- 'Get Free'
Lana Del Rey

So you guys all know how much I love Lana Del Rey. And a huge part of the reason I love her so much is that she vocalises what I feel. When I was at my lowest points, my parents actually hated me listening to her. They'd say 'her music is too sad, it's making you more depressed.' But the truth was, her music helped me, it comforted me, because it made me feel less alone. Her lyrics seemed to sooth my soul. It's funny, because it seems that every album she releases is timed perfectly to compliment my state of mind at that moment. I remember when 'Honeymoon' was released around 2015, the song 'God Knows I Tried' perfectly encapsulated everything I had been feeling those past few months; lost, without hope, feeling as though I had tried and failed, and had not much left to live for.
And then this summer, uncharacteristically, Lana released 'Lust For Life', an album with slightly more optimistic themes, and it's strikes me how incredibly coincidental that is, given that I've begun to enter that slightly more optimistic head space too. See I think a year ago had Lana released that album, it would have been named 'Lost For Life', and that's exactly how I felt then. But now I'm starting to feel different. I'm starting to feel as though, finally, I'm crossing the threshold too.

Undoubtedly, that will for certain
Take the dead out of the sea
And the darkness from the arts
- 'Get Free'
Lana Del Rey

My mental health struggles have been openly documented on this blog. If you're new, about 10 months ago, my mental health reached crisis point, and I was forced to suspend my university study in order to take time to recover from depression and anxiety. This was something that I had never really foreseen. I think especially in our current social media obsessed world, I had seen and heard so much about mental health issues, that instead of becoming more open and accepting of it for myself, it had a rather different effect, in that I normalised it completely and didn't see the need to get help, or view it as a legitimate health concern that I needed assistance with. I think often depression is accompanied with a rather powerful guilt and denial complex. A feeling of, 'everyone suffers with down periods in their life, I'm no exception so I need to stop feeling sorry for myself and get on with it'. This was all compacted by the fact that mental health issues are incredibly widespread in my university, and could even be considered the 'norm', so I never felt as though I was really any different, and thus needed, or deserved, help. I had suffered with mild bouts of depression throughout my teen years before uni, and was aware that there was a history of depression within my family, but I had never envisioned my mental state affecting my life to the extent it has. See, we see a lot of information about depression online, and often people claim to suffer from various mental health issues, but I think it's difficult, as lots of the time health issues are claimed without any real medical professional assistance or legitimate diagnoses'. This was also something I was worried about. I felt as though I didn't have the 'right' to say I had depression, because I hadn't been diagnosed, and the denial and guilt meant I felt as though I was attention seeking so didn't want to go to the doctors. Of course, it then became a vicious cycle.

Been trying hard not to get into trouble, 
But I, I've got a war in my mind
- 'Ride'
Lana Del Rey

Depression can be an incredibly lonely illness. Because for so long, you can act as though nothing is wrong. But it's in those moments on your own, when it's just you and your thoughts, that you really just how desperately unhappy you are. Just how much pain you are feeling, and just how isolated you feel. It can feel as though no one will get it, no one will can understand. I remember often feeling empty, just empty. And the saddest part for me was that I could never understand why. I had, to the that point, achieved everything I had set my mind to. I had a family who loved me and had been given some of the best opportunities, better than I ever thought I would have had. But yet, this didn't stop me feeling so incredibly lost and unhappy with and inside myself.

Yet still inside, I felt alone
For reasons unknown to me
- 'Old Money'
Lana Del Rey

It was only when it got to the point at which I was barely existing that I realised just how serious mental illness can be. What had been a progressively developing illness became extremely acute last January. All of a sudden I was unable to do anything and everything. I had been miserably getting by with uni work, which had been unaffected grades wise so my tutors were unsuspecting that anything was wrong, but my concentration then dramatically waned. It got to the point where I was physically unable to get out of bed because I felt so low and so tired. I had no routine, I was waking up at 6pm and sleeping at 7am. I never saw daylight. I had terrible eating habits. I was perpetually weepy, and disinterested in absolutely everything. Whilst I had experienced this before for a couple of weeks here and there, this time it was far more prolonged, far more intense, and far more scary. Despite wanting to keep going on, it was then that I knew that I didn't have a choice. Something had to change, because my world was crumbling, and the suffering was simply too much.

Feet don't fail me now
Take me to the finish line
Oh, my heart, it breaks every step that I take
- 'Born to Die'
Lana Del Rey

Making the decision to temporarily leave uni for the sake of salvaging what I could of my mental health was one of the hardest I've ever made, entrenched in feelings of disappointment in myself, guilt, denial, and self-loathing. I felt like the biggest failure, which I touched on more in this post. I felt as though in some sense, this was what I deserved, I deserved to struggle and be unhappy, and that this just proved that I wasn't good enough. It proved that all of my feelings of worthlessness and pointlessness were legitimate, and this was all accompanied by a huge sense of feeling as though I was being left behind.

I'm tired of feeling like I'm fucking crazy
- 'Ride'
Lana Del Rey

For the first few months of my intermission, then, not much changed. I would spend all day in bed watching tv that I was utterly disinterested in, my sleep hygiene was still an absolute clusterfuck, and I was constantly stalking the social media profiles of my friends at uni, emphasising the fact that I was not at uni when I should have been. My counselling sessions felt futile, I noticed no changes in myself despite taking anti-depressants, and began to feel as though I could never be 'fixed' and go on to live a normal life. Life just began to seem pretty long, if that makes sense. Time felt slow and without end and distinction, I couldn't differentiate well between the days, had nothing to motivate me or look forward to. My whole outlook was, ultimately, incredibly bleak.

Don't make me sad, don't make me cry
Sometimes love is not enough and the road gets tough
I don't know why
- 'Born To Die'
Lana Del Rey

Life is tough for everyone at the best of times, but mental health is a very different kind of battle. It's an incredibly different one. So often, it can feel as though there is no hope, nothing worth living for. For so long I felt like I was falling deeper and deeper into the black. It was all I could see, all I could feel, all I knew.

I've got nothing much to live for
Ever since I found my fame
- 'God Knows I Tried'
Lana Del Rey

But slowly, bit by bit, that black is fading. Around June, things started to turn around. After an adjustment of my medication, I began, very slowly, to feel a little more alive. The changes those little pills began to give and the peace it provided me are the reason I will never apologise for turning to medication for help with my mental health. Anti-depressants are still rather stigmatised, and this was something I had internalised myself. At first, I felt as though I was a fraud who didn't really need them, who was pretending to be seriously ill. But I have so much to thank them for. They saved me, and I will unapologetically take them for as long as I need to.

Taking all my medicine to take my thoughts away
- 'Heroin'
Lana Del Rey

Beginning to feel a sense of peace was something I was so unfamiliar with. Being able to sleep without overthinking or insomnia became more frequent, as opposed to that ever so rare occurrence. I began to wake up and feel as though, even if I felt down, that I could still try and face the day. I began to sit up in bed instead of laying in it all day. I began to do one little task a day, whether it was a walk to the park, or a visit to a friend. I started to try and read short articles, something that had seemed impossible a few months previously. I would sit and draw or do colouring as a form of therapy when feeling unmotivated and sad, and therefore began to get in touch with some of my old passions. I began to feel a little more human, and my mindset slowly started to demystify. It wasn't so black, I was entering a grey area, grey to me brings uncertainty, but I'm ok with that, as uncertainty brings possibility. the grey something different, it's something new. And it means that change is possible.

There's a change gonna come, I don't know where or when
But whenever it does, we'll be here for it
- 'Change'
Lana Del Rey

I guess I'm starting to feel like maybe, just maybe, life is beautiful.

I don't pretend that my whole life outlook will ever change, and I won't apologise for my fundamentally pessimistic character. I realise now that being a 'glass have empty' as opposed to a 'glass half full' type of person is a personality trait, not necessarily a symptom of depression. I think sometimes, with mental health, we can confuse our personalities with our health issues, and for a little while I felt as though I needed to erase myself completely, to become a 'blank canvas' as it were, and start again. It didn't take long for me to realise that being optimistic, being someone who wakes up each day with an excitement for that day just isn't me. However hard I tried, it wouldn't come naturally. I know I will always fundamentally be me, and a big part of that is my slightly more pessimistic, or perhaps realistic outlook.

You are what you are
I don't matter to anyone
But Hollywood legends never grow old
And all of what's hidden
Well, it will never grow cold
- 'Terrence Loves You'
Lana Del Rey

But that's ok. There are positives, and I recognise that, I can be more critical and more of a perfectionist, which in my opinion, has it's advantages. I always set myself big goals and I always put my all into achieving them. I'm a realist and a skeptic, and so I'm not often let down but external factors, and when I'm proved wrong, I'm pleasantly surprised. So long as these personality traits don't ever cloud my judgement and become all encompassing due to my health illnesses, then I feel as though they are manageable, and without overly negative consequence. They are just me. I don't need to see everything as black, and now I realise that happiness isn't simply a fantasy, or something I'm undeserving of.

Oh, what can I do?
Life is beautiful, but you don't have a clue
Sun and ocean blue
Their magnificence, it don't make sense to you
- 'Black Beauty'
Lana Del Rey

Happiness is a funny concept. I'm still not sure it can ever really be achieved, not fully or completely. But maybe that's depression speaking, maybe that's my ultimately pessimistic attitude speaking, I don't know. There's a school of thought propagated by Aristotle and philosopher and theologian Aquinas that I actually studied a lot in my 2nd year of university for my philosophy module, that I've only really begun to consider more now. The thinking is that, in this earthly life, in these physical bodies, the most we can achieve is a sort of 'imperfect happiness', as there is always more that we want to achieve, want to know, want to feel, and we simply can't do it all. I can understand this logic, I think that might be true. I see that in humanity, there's a constant sense that no matter how much we have, we always seem to want more, feel that we're not living life 'to the full' because we're not achieving it all. Aquinas suggests that a 'perfect happiness', this beatitude, is only accessible to us in the after life. Maybe my thinking is closer to this, I don't know. Maybe by setting our expectations of happiness so high, we set ourselves up for a fail anyway. For so long I've been feeling as though I was missing out, because everyone else is completely happy, and I'm not. But I think this is a fallacy. People may seem to have it all outwardly, but more often than not, they have battles they're fighting too, and darkness in their lives. Darkness plagues some of us more than others, but I don't think anyone is completely devoid of it. I realised I had to change the way that I approached my recovery. Typically, I was reaching for something that might not even be possible. I've realised that I need to stop aiming for this 'perfect happiness', this beatitude. Living a life with both light and dark is ok. And it's about letting as much light in as I can; that's what I should be focussing on.

Let there be light
Light up my life
- 'God Knows I Tried'
Lana Del Rey

What I do know, however, is that that I no longer feel as though I'm total prisoner of my mind. I got free. This is no declaration of happiness. I can't say I've yet reached that stage. But I feel better. I feel ok. And I guess I've realised that maybe happiness is something worth believing in after all.

Taking the time out of uni to fix myself, to begin to find myself, was one of the best decisions I've made in my life. I was thrown a huge challenge, but I got the chance to breathe. I now hope to begin that journey of self acceptance has allowed myself to unapologetically rid myself of unnecessary darkness. I may have a long way to go, but I have the right to be proud of what I've achieved so far, of the huge life changes I've made, to know that I've worked hard to get here and that I am good enough to deserve them.

Life rocked me like Mötley,
Grabbed me by the ribbons in my hair
Life rocked me ultra-softly
Like the heavy metal that you wear
- 'Heroin'
Lana Del Rey

I'm hoping now, that I can close this chapter. That I can turn the page, and start afresh. I do not pretend for one second that I am 'cured', because I don't think that mental health often really works like that. I've made the mistake of reaching a good place, thinking that was 'the end' and then relapsing into a depressive episode which destroyed my faith in all I had achieved in my recovery. It made me realise that I think, for some of us, mental health is an ongoing struggle, and that can be difficult to accept. But we learn to live with it, to handle it. They say recovery is a journey, not a destination, and I tend to agree. There shall be ups and downs, but now I know that whoever far I sink into the black, there is always the possibility of finding the blue. Depression, for me, will likely be the war of my lifetime, but I have won this battle, and I hold onto that.

There's no more chasing rainbows
And hoping for an end to them
Their arches are illusions
Solid at first glance
But then you try to touch them
There's nothing to hold onto
The colours used to lure you in
And put you in a trance
- 'Get Free'
Lana Del Rey

For anyone out there who is still in the black, who is completely overwhelmed by the war in their mind, who is simply tired of feeling fucking crazy, please remember: This too shall pass. Life is always worth living.

I want to move
Out of the black
And into the blue
- 'Get Free'
Lana Del Rey

Until next time,
Bisous <3


Playsuit: Missguided (also similar cheaper version here)
Belt: Asos (very old, similar here)


Friday, 29 September 2017

Lonely Hearts Club, Heartbreak Hotel, Ugly Avenue

So, we've all been there.... I hope. Not because I wish bad on you but because it'll make me feel an awful lot better if I knew I wasn't the only one who has suffered this predicament. 

And what I'm talking about is that someone (or perhaps multiple people, as is in my case LOL). The one that got away, but that you never really had in the first place. 'The Unrequited Crush', if you will. 

What starts off as thinking someone is pretty hot in your afternoon lecture turns into only making it to your 9ams in the hope that said someone is there, and of course, this turns into glancing far too often in their direction any time you're in their oh-so-perfect presence. 

Before you know it you're desperately trying (and failing) to suppress your inner A (shoutout to all my disappointed PLL fans out there!). But in no time at all, you have that stalker hood placed firmly over that stupid head of yours, and you're beginning to piece together the life of your future husband. I mean boyfriend. I mean friend. I mean, is there any way that this becomes at all acceptable?!

Flash forward a couple of weeks and you're 468 pictures deep in the old Facebook archives, discovering that he also had braces back in '09, but mannn did he glow up. Now the perfect height to compliment you in heels. Aw, I didn't know he wore glasses! Similar sense of humour = bonus. Ooohhhhh a Lauryn Hill fan... interesting, another bonus point. Nice family, wonderful! I wonder if they'd like me? ...

And if you've reached that point, well my friends, suddenly you'll begin to realise that you are totally, totally fucked. 

Yep, chances are you're half way up shit creek and of course you've got no paddles. 

There's only one road from here, and it's not the most dignified. But time and time again we choose to take it anyway. Why I ask, why?! 

So here folks, are the 5 things you've probably done when crushing hard: 

The Overthink
So your heart is set firmly on this boy, and now you're mentally going over every single meeting, conversation and interaction the two of you have have shared in search of romantic overtones, to work out whether there could be a chance that the feelings are mutual. Pahhhhhh yeah right, but you'll do it anyway. This will often be accompanied with 'the romanticise'. And by that I mean, remember when you two were sitting across the room for each other and you thought for a minute that you locked eyes? Well, in reality he was staring at the clock directly behind you, but you'll remember it the first way anyway. You'll probably romanticise your first ever meeting, so it begins to resemble something out of a fucking disney movie. You'll remember it as awkward, but cute. Awkwardly cute, I guess. But really, it was just awkward. When I first saw a 'crush' I definitely scurried into my first ever lecture 5 minutes late, a flustered, sweaty mess, donned in an obnoxiously oversized bow in my hair, frilly socks and leather trousers, slightly too noisy clippy-cloppy brogues, and a full face of very badly applied slap sliding down my face. I may as well have had lipstick on my teeth and my knickers tucked into a skirt it was that shit. lol. Of course, the only free seat happens to be next to the crush. And you know what, it might have been a romantic first meeting, if we had got together. But we didn't. So it's not. It's just shit shit shit. Lol. You know what? 9 times out of 10, he's not even going to know your name. We ladies do have a tendency to want the ones we really can't have. Perhaps he's a few social stratas higher than you, not on your 'level' (loooool). And wow does that feel like you've been slapped with a wet kipper. There you are planning your future life together and you're not even on his radar LOL! There's definitely no romanticising that, but of course, we won't be accepting that. 

The Social Media Stalk
 Now the crush is firmly established, you're in it for the long haul, so naturally you'll be indulging in a few more stalking sessions, just in case you missed anything the first 12 times. You're in dangerous territory now, folks. I mean, once you're on this stage, it's pretty much game over for you. Be prepared to fall really quite deeply ... in 5, 4, 3...
You see a picture of him and his mum and think, aww she looks as though she'd be such a wonderful mother-in-law. Him and an ex (pfffttttt, she ain't got nothing on me you mutter whilst silently weeping into your bowl of crunchy nut and cursing the fact you were born with that face) just me? Ok kl. 
Scroll some more, 'Christ, he looks good in a suit...' personally, if if I see any crush wearing a bow tie, he's effectively impregnated me already. (LOL)

The Shooting of the Shot
A phrase coined by my good friend, this, girls, is your first stage of bravery. The registering of interest. The chirpse. So you've plucked up the courage to ask him out for a drink? Honey, you're about to shoot your shot. But bloody hell, girl, if you are asking this guy out for a drink, wow do you have balls of steel, I salute you. I can assure you that I will never be so brazen. No, me shooting my shot is drunkenly liking a bunch of Facebook photos and expecting the guy to take that as a strong hint that I like him, and thus proceed to ask me out on a date. That's right, he does the asking, I do the playing hard to get - good and proper, as it should be. Of course, when that dream scenario fails to occur and you're left in bewilderment, wondering how your so blatant shot has not been well received, you're more than likely about to fall into...

The Drunk Text
Please Note: may also be accompanied by the drunk heart to heart and the drunk cry, and if you're really unlucky, the drunk phonecall. 
 See, there may be a point at which you decide it's time to shoot your second shot, a 'just in case he didn't get the message the first time around' shot, if you will, and this will usually be whilst drunk. One minute you're all like 'yeah let's text him netflix and chill it'll be bants' in the smoking area of the club, and next minute you're all up in your feelings with your pals, curled up in a ball having a drunk cry outside Sainsbury's. As we all know, no good decision has EVER been made whilst drunk, so I'd advise one to ABORT ABORT ABORT. 
But I already know you would've completely ignored that advice anyway so solidarity for the inevitable regret you felt the day after. Unless you were presently surprised and your feelings were reciprocated - in that case, fuck you, I cannot stand the 0.9% who actually get a good result out of the drunk text, that's not how it works, you should be ridiculously embarrassed and hanging your head in shame like the rest of us. Extra solidarity if they completely air your message the next day (I relate.. quite deeply. Lol!)

The Tinder Validation Phase
Warning: Proceed at your own risk. Now you've been pied by your one true love and future husband, I'm gonna guess that you're feeling rather shitty. Low self esteem levels will very from 'I'll take a day to watch the notebook and eat dominos' to 'when can I get admitted into the nearest ugly home'. I'll usually be half sobbing half belting out 'Why Don't You Love Me' by BeyoncĂ©, but of course, not looking as glam as Miss Bey in her heartbroken state. Nope, I'll probably be warbling away under my duvet, smothered in sudocrem with a box of brownies at my side. There's therefore a high chance that you'll be tempted to enter the murky world of online dating to provide that much needed ego boost and validation from strangers online. Probably not your finest hour, and I suspect you're swiping right for just about anyone, but at least you're getting matches, so perhaps you'll hold that place at the ugly home. 

The Acceptance 
Is this really an actual phase that exists? Like honestly, people get pied and one day they're ok with it? No hard feelings? No saltiness? It is a phase I have yet to fully experience (lol). Sure, I'll move on and get over it, but surely we're always slightly salty. Just a little bit? But nonetheless  I suspect acceptance is one of 3 things:
  1. Denial. So it may not have worked out today, but you're pretty sure you'll be living in that cute little country house with 3 kids, a dog and a tortoise in 10 years time, so let's just let fate take control, eh? You do you, he'll do him, and before you know it he will have screwed his head firmly back on, will leave his basic gf and declare his love for you, natch. 
  2. You tell all your friends you're over it, Christ, you've even managed to convince yourself you're over it, so allow yourself to fall prey to the inevitable 'haha you got pied' banter. Of course this is a ruse as you still secretly pine and indulge in the occasional social media stalk. Of course, at particularly testing times, such as when you realise you're the only single gal in your girl gang, you allow that rare salty tear to escape. This may evolve into a full on blubber when you realise he's moved on to someone new, yet you're still feeling blue. 
  3. You've actually gotten over that crush, realised that he's the one that lost out, and have moved on. I personally have yet to reach this advanced stage of girl boss enlightenment, but bravo to all you ladies who are there nonetheless! 

But you know what, let's end on a positive, eh? As humiliating and disheartening as young love can be, I think those crazy responses are something we grow out of. At some point, the old ego just can't take anymore beating, and your innate sense of self-dignity and self-preservation kick in. It's just as well; I'm so happy I've grown out of this stage, because the old cringe reflex of mine has had enough usage for a lifetime lol. And as for 'your man'. Well, they say 'there's plenty more fish in the sea', right? And hopefully we'll all find our bae without actually having to sign up to plenty of fish dot com. (Lol). But in all seriousness, that crush might have you feeling blue, lord knows no one enjoys that all too bitter rejection pill, BUT let's remember that we have time on our side, eh? And that indeed means it's time to be young, be foolish, and be happy. 

So channel your inner Lolita, throw on your shortest sundress and a pair of obnoxious shades, a slap of bright lipstick for a classic fruit punch lip, and a ridiculous yet stylish hairstyle. Then, be on your way. Life's too short to pine after boys that don't want you, and it's also far too short to not have fun with your fashion. 

Have you ever had an unrequited crush? Or multiple, as have I? (lol!) Let me know in the comments below!

Until next time, 
Bisous <3


Dress: Topshop
Sunglasses: Forever 21 (similar here)
Trainers: Boohoo*


Monday, 25 September 2017

Hello lovelies,

Welcome back to another Makeup Monday! Now I know I said it was going to be my Charlotte Tilbury haul and tutorial today, but that'll be next Monday as I haven't had the time to shoot that yet! So I thought I'd write my first ever 'disappointing products' type post. Now I know normally I just talk about products I like, but I personally like to read posts on what not to buy too, so I know what to avoid. 

Now none of these products are actually terrible, being a uni student with not much disposable income, I rarely buy products without researching them extensively first, so more often that not, they work out for me. But nevertheless, I still get the odd dud product, that's not necessary uawful, but did not at all meet my expectations, and that I feel there are better versions of. 

So without further ado, let's get into it!

1.) BENEFIT 'THEY'RE REAL' MASCARA - Now this one I found very disappointing. I had read so many reviews on this, hailing it the best mascara ever, and I just do not get the hype at all! Now if I'm completely honest, I'm not a big fan of plastic wand mascaras, but I bought this anyway as I was so taken in by all the positive reviews. Don't get me wrong, by no means is this utterly useless. It does do something for the lashes, I find it separates them well and doesn't coat them in too much product. But, that's all it does. I don't find that this adds much volume, length or thickness, and really, those are things I prioritise in a mascara. I have rather long, thick lashes as well, so I'm thinking if I don't see too much difference on my lashes, I'm not seeing how this is making much difference to people who need a lot more from their mascara! Personally if you're looking for a mascara that will lengthen, thicken, volumes and give that fluttery effect, I would recommend either the Charlotte Tilbury Legendary Lashes, or Urban Decay Perversion, which do all of those things! So yes, this mascara, not terrible, but not worth the £19.50 price tag, as there are definitely better ones on the market, and I'm sure there are even better drugstore ones. 

2.) ELF CLEAR BROW GEL - Ok so moving onto this brow gel, I have to start by saying that this isn't actually a bad product. I mean that in the sense that, it does what it's made to do, it holds your brow hairs in place so they look nice and need, and I can't say that it does not do this job. But, I don't think it does the job for long. See if you use pencil or gel on your brows first, this gel seems to pick up the product already on the brows, so that after not too long the gel begins to turn a grim browny colour. But more importantly, it simultaneously begins to become a lot more thick and gloopy as well. I can only guess that as the brush picks up more and more product from your brows, it mixes with the gel to make it very thick, and therefore not as effective as when new. Now in fairness, this gel is only £2 ish, so it's incredibly cheap, but I also use the Rimmel 'Brow This Way' Brow Gel, which is about £4.50, and I don't find I get this problem at all. I'd therefore say you're far better off many buying the Rimmel gel or another similar one which will last longer, than scrimping and getting this, which I think you'll have to throw out more quickly. 

3.) ELF ESSENTIAL LIPSTICK - I don't want to seem as though I'm bashing Elf! I actually loveee their brow pomade and mine lasted about 3 years with daily use! But the essential lipsticks were another fail for me. I got a couple a couple of years ago when my friend went to America, where these are only $1. I got 2 colours, a light pink and a darker berry shade. Now the berry shade isn't too bad, and I have found I have got a fair bit of use of of this. But the lighter pink was awful. I just found it far too creamy, which meant that whilst the shade was very pigmented, it moved around the lips a lot, and also didn't sit too well on them. I'd therefore definitely say that if you're wanting to try these, I'd recommend you trying the darker colours, which for some reason have a much better finish and staying power than the lighter colours. If you buy the darker shades, then these do turn out to be good value for money, but I'd say save your money when it comes to the lighter ones. 

4.) COLLECTION LASTING PERFECTION CONCEALER - Shock horror! This might be a slightly controversial one! Now literally every beauty blogger and their dog raves about this product, but I just don't get it. For starters, yes it's cheap at £3.99, but the way people go on about it being a steal, I thought it'd be like £1.99 lol. Now I find this works fine on my face to cover up blemishes and so on, but find it creases like shit under the eyes. Now I don't really have any fine lines or bags under my eyes; it's not one of my problem areas, but I still find this manages to settle in lines. I'd also say the shade range is absolutely pants, I can only just use the darkest shade and that's when it's the dead of winter and I have no trace of tan, so I think that's a shame, as they've had years to rectify this! I don't actually use any other drugstore concealers, but I've heard a lot about the LA Girl Pro Conceal, which comes in a vast array of shades, so I'm hoping that one is better!

5.) BOBBI BROWN LONG WEAR EVEN FINISH FOUNDATION - So this was actually my fist ever foundation! So kinda sad it's on this list. Now to be honest, it may actually be slightly unfair for me to include this, as I think the reason I didn't get one with it is because it was suited to my skin. Not only was it the wrong shade, and therefore made me legit look like an oompa loompa, but I was incredibly oily, and this foundation just couldn't handle that. Now I found that when applied to get a sheer to medium finish it looked very nice, and it also looked very nice before I got oily, but at that time I had a lot of acne and scarring and therefore wanted the fullest coverage I could get, and the fact I was so oily meant it looked bad practically 2 hours after I'd put it on. So I guess that's my gripe, it can have a lovely finish, but isn't particularly long wearing or suitable for very oily skin, which is what I had been told by the makeup artists at the time of purchase. I'd be interested to try it again now as my skin is nowhere near as oily as it used to be, and I also go for a much more sheer/medium finish for my base, so I actually think I'd love it now. But as a warning to all you oily girls, I'd steer clear, and at that time, it didn't do a great job, and for £30+ I expected a lot more!

So that's all for today, folks, my low key roast on a few products haha! I hope you find this useful! What has been your most disappointing product?

Until next time,
Bisous <3



Friday, 22 September 2017

Hi lovelies!

I hope you've all had a wonderful week!

Ah Freshers. Such an odd year with many ups and downs. You're finally embracing independence and freedom; I'd love to buy whatever I wanted on my grocery shop, but I simultaneously missed Mum's dinners. I loved having my own space and having my own 'house' (well room) rules, but I missed the presence of my family and hearing their murmurs from the lounge whilst up in my room. I loved the constant partying and club nights, but hated the faculty dinners and ice breaker meetings that even the numbing haze of alcohol could not solve for this far too anxious gal. I loved the lectures and feeling like a proper student with my bundle of books propped under my arm, but I hated the last minute all nighters to get work done.

 Now, given that some of you may well be getting ready to journey off to university; a whole new exciting but scary chapter in our lives, I know you're probably experiencing a whole plethora of emotions. I was absolutely terrified, and so I thought I'd write a little post about freshers. Now I've seen a lot of posts about tips when going to university, but I thought I would write a post all about my biggest fresher regrets, so that you don't make them too! So here we go!

1.) Lack of structure - Ah, by far my biggest regret, as I'm pretty sure it was this that triggered my depressive episode. Losing a sense of structure, waking up at 5pm and sleeping at 6am, eating dinner at 2am; that was honestly my routine at university in first year, and fuck me, was it unhealthy. I was constantly tired, often didn't see people since my routine was so irregular, and it definitely affected my mood, probably partly because I didn't often see daylight. It's soooo important that you try to keep some sort of structure for your general wellbeing and self care, since I think we vastly underestimate the way in which structure affects our mood and energy levels. Now the partying and clubbing three nights a week, day drinking and one 2pm lecture a day life may sound great (and trust, it is at first), but the novelty soon wears off! Still do all those things, but make sure there's still some routine - it's all moderation!

2.) Not joining enough societies - This is something that helps so much in terms of forming friendships, and meeting new people. I started uni with the intention of joining all the dance societies and managed a few measly weeks before I attended less and less classes and spent more and more hours in bed. Joining societies for things that were hobbies for you at home or that you have always wanted to try, is a great way to also take a break from work, from the stifled atmosphere university sometimes has, and just allows you to have some downtime, as well as giving you the opportunity to meet people with similar interests to you. If you can't think of anything to join, join something completely random! Tag along with a friend to one of their clubs! I'm about to go back to uni and I intend to try my hand at rowing - wish me luck, lol! I have no idea how to handle these early mornings!

3.) Isolating myself - It's very easy in university to isolate yourself from those around you, since you have fewer contact hours in terms of lectures and tutorials, and this was something I did for the first term of university. Having social anxiety meant that being around completely new people all the time felt incredibly scary and made me feel anxious. Despite that it is so important that you try to socialise as much as you possibly can. Friendships form so quickly whilst at uni, and it's awful to miss out on those because of insecurity. I know that this isn't helpful advice, suffering from anxiety means you can't help it! But it's about trying your hardest to push yourself out of your comfort zone as much as possible. Start small, no one is telling you to suddenly become the life and soul of the party, but try to just make conversation with one new person each day. Any small step you can take, and build on it. Having a good support network of friends is one of the best and most important aspects of university, so make sure you try to build this from the off!

4.) Leaving work until the last minute! - Even I am low key laughing at myself at this one, because in all honesty, I don't really see this changing much when I go back to uni in a couple of weeks. But honestly guys, in first year, I don't think I wrote a single essay in daylight hours. Everything was an all nighter, and it was noootttttt fun lol! Now I go to a very academic heavy university where I can often be doing 2 essays a week, and leaving things to the last minute really was not wise. I think it's a good idea to make sure you work during the day so that you can enjoy the evening activities and don't have to be the one stuck in your room panic writing that essay for the next day! 

Are you off to university this year? Or are you an old hand? What would your biggest 1st year regrets be? Let me know in the comments below! 

Until next time,
Bisous <3



Tee: Forever 21
Jeans: H&M (sold out, similar here)
Jacket: Bershka
Shoes: Gucci
Bag: Zara (v old, similar here)
Twilly: Dior (in store)
Sunglasses: Miu Miu
Necklaces: Na-kd Fashion, Forever 21


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