Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Books. Lots of books.

booksSee the full sized image by Katey Nicosia @ Flickr here. 

I used to read. A lot. While I’m working on my time management skills at the moment , I don’t seem to have as much time to read as I want to . I’ve made a promise to myself though that I won’t buy any new books until I’ve finished the ones I have on my shelf. I found this meme on Nicola’s blog, who in turn found it somewhere else.

Do you snack while you read? If so, favourite reading snack?
I try not to – I’ll just make a mess otherwise. Normally when I’m reading a book for fun I’m in my bed and I never eat or drink in bed for the fear of spilling something. When I’m reading and working on university things at a table or my desk I usually have a drink of some sort and Snack-a-Jack crisp things – they’re like mini rice cakes! Salt and vinegar flavour, of course.

Do you tend to mark your books as you read them, or does the idea of writing on your books horrify you?
I think I’ve only ever written on a book once – it was the Catcher in the Rye and I was going to write an essay on it. I read the book once, discovered that I didn’t really like it much and wouldn’t read it again so went to town with highlighters and pens. Except for that, I’ve never ever written in a book. I would never dream of writing in a textbook either – it would become unsellable.

How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog ears? Leaving the book open flat?
I have a terrible habit of lying them open flat and ruining the spine. I’m trying to stop doing this so I’m using a folded up post it note as a bookmark until I get something a little more permanent.

Fiction, Non-Fiction or both?
At the moment I’m preferring fiction books because I don’t want to feel like I’m learning anything else than what I have to for my modules. That said, I plan on buying a few non-fiction books when I do finish my backlog.

Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point?
Both! If it’s a “complicated” book I have to read to the end of a chapter or I end up confusing myself, however if it’s a fairly simple and fluffy book I can just stop at the end of a paragraph and pick up where I left off later on.

If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away?
If I’m reading in the same room as my boyfriend then I’ll normally ask him what it means, otherwise I’ll just guess it from the context of the sentence and hope for the best.

What are you currently reading?
The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown and The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. I also started reading Schindler’s Ark by Thomas Keneally and The Vampire Lestat by Anne Rice, but I’ll have to start again with them.

What is the last book you bought?
The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown in Tesco for £7.

Are you the type of person who can only read one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time?
As you can tell from above, I can read more than one book at a time, but I probably shouldn’t since I confuse myself so much doing simple things.

Do you prefer series or stand alone books?
To be honest, I really have no preference at all – I read both, though I think I slightly prefer series if I’m being totally honest with myself. Series of books allow you to feel as though you know the character and drags you into the story a little bit more.

Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over?
Not really. I tell people to read Anne Rice and Stephen King a lot as they’re modern classics that a lot of people my age never read. They just don’t know what they’re missing out on.

How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?)
At the moment there’s no real organisation. The bookshelf I have is really small and I can really only just fit my books and magazines onto it. I have big books first in no particular order, then the smaller books (because books only seem to come in two sizes?!). There’s no order except for series being placed together and then in order. Like my Anne Rice books are all together in the right order since it’s the first four books of the Vampire Chronicles.

What is everyone else reading at the moment? Textbooks don’t count!


Tuesday, 29 September 2009

What’s on your face?

Or more politely titled, “What make up are you wearing today?”.


Blend blend blend!
This is one of my favourite things to do when I’m on the internet – looking inside other peoples handbags, purses and bedrooms because I’m just a nosy person in general. So I thought I would show everyone what make up I wear on a day to day bases. The first picture just above this paragraph is everything together and all laid out very nicely and neatly – sadly it doesn’t look like that when I’ve got it stored. I put my make up on in the morning and my morning facial care routine is a exfoliation using a Avon scrub and moisturise with Nivea Soft cream. I normally let my moisturiser soak in for about 15 or 20 minutes before I start on my make up.


The first thing I put on is my DiorSkin Nude liquid foundation in shade 010. You can read my review of it here. I don’t use a brush or sponge for liquid foundation – I prefer to use my clean fingers. I then pop on a little bit of Rimmel’s Hide The Blemish Concealer in shade 103 Soft Honey over any marks/spots and a little bit under each eye to hide the bags – I use a brush for spots (not pictured) and just a finger for the eye area. My next step is to apply a little bit of Lily Lolo Mineral Foundation in shade Candy Cane (which is actually a little bit too pinky for me) over my whole face to minimise my pores. I use the longer power brush for that.

What I do next step is probably going to sound a bit strange to everyone, but bare with me. I apply some Bourjois Blush in shade 54 Rose Frisson to my cheeks and then using the large kabuki brush I swipe Rimmel’s Stay Matte Pressed Powder in shade 005 Silky Beige over my entire face, blending the blusher as I do so. I don’t know why I do this – I just find it works a whole lot better for me and makes my blush look really smoothly blended. I carry the kabuki brush and Rimmel powder with me in my bag for day time touch ups.


After I’ve done my base, I move onto my eye make up. I apply some Urban Decay Primer Potion of my lid area and while I wait for that to dry I curl my lashes for the first time. I then use the eye shadow brush pictured and apply the top shade from the Eyeko 5 in 1Eyeshadow Cake in shade Pretty Eyes. It’s a pretty and subtle sparkly gold colour and works really well for day time. I then curl my lashes again before apply a lot of BADgal Lash Mascara in black – you can read my review of it here. I don’t tend to use eyeliner during the day, but prefer to save it for night time and when I want to feel extra glamorous. Saying that, I do go through stages where I like to wear eyeliner every day – when I do wear it I use Avon Glimmer sticks in shade Blackest Black.


This is the dreadfully boring section I’m afraid. I burnt my lip and the skin just above it about three weeks ago on a too hot Cuppasoup and it’s still healing – being near my mouth isn’t helping obviously. So while it’s still quite dry and unsmooth I’ve been avoiding lipsticks and coloured glosses to try and avoid people looking at the hideous mess that it is. So I give my lips a quick swipe of Cherry Chapstick for a subtle colour and then go over it in Avon Plump Pout lip gloss in shade Pink Pucker, which is mostly clear.

The whole routine takes me about ten minutes now – I’ve got it down to a very fine art. So now I’m interested – what do all of you wear on your face make up wise on a normal day? What do you wear on a night out if you want to look extra glamorous and sexy? Leave a comment or do your own blog post and link me to it!


Monday, 28 September 2009

Affordable Fashion #5

I can’t believe that I haven’t done this since July! This is one of my favourite mini series I do, so I hope you all still enjoy it.

gladiatorAFImage courtesy of

While I’m personally not a massive fan of gladiator and caged heels, they still seem to be in fashion and it doesn’t look like they’re going to be going away any time soon. With all of this in mind I thought it was time to a) feature a pair of shoes; and b) cover something which is actually “fashionable”. These gladiator heels stick out from the crowd for having a unique weave detail over the entire shoe, as well as it being in metallic colours which will no doubt be making a comeback for the Christmas and New Years parties.

The deets?
You can get these from for a wonderfully low £25 and they also come in “Pewter” and “Snakeskin” as well as the black shown above.


Friday, 25 September 2009

My latest purchases.

And now I have about £5 to last me two weeks. Brilliant. I regret nothing. I want to apologise now for these photos – first time I’ve used the flash on my camera and so far… I need more practise.

SAM_0040Vintage rose skirt from New Look - £18.

I actually bought this last week, but it still counts. It’s high waist-ed and elasticised so super comfy. And the first high waist skirt I’ve bought. I got it in the size I normally buy for trousers, forgetting that my waist is actually a size smaller (I am not in proportion) so it doesn’t really stretch all that much, which I think is a good thing – no unsightly bulges and plenty of room for tucking in a vest. I wore it with a white vest and a long black boyfriend cardigan the other day – it was lovely. I actually have a little shock when I got it home – I hadn’t realised it was two layered and had lace edging, which you can see here:

But I think it just adds to it quite nicely. Though in the wind I’ve been having a few… Marilyn Monroe moments.

SAM_0046“Wool” colour block skirt - £12.72

This is quite thick and, as you can see, lined. The camera helped out a bit here actually to show that it is in fact grey with blue and black stripes at the bottom. Another high waist baby here, but it’s still got quite a nice bit of length on it, which I like since I have long legs. It’s also quite… regal and sophisticated, while at the same time having enough of a kick in it to not be something your gran would wear. I think I’ll probably wear this with a black vest and a blue cardigan, because I’m quite matchy matchy. I’ll have to take it in a wee bit first – I bought it in my normal size again and it doesn’t have an ounce of give so it is about an inch too big. Now I just need a twin set, some tweed and a string of pearls…

SAM_0048Shirt dress – £10.77

Are these in? I’m not sure, but it’s light and comfy, which I’m finding I need these days. It’s just so unseasonably warm where I am, but at the same time windy, so layers are an absolute must. Though the picture doesn’t show it, the shirt is actually white and blue strips, not grey. You might be able to see it larger with a click of your mouse? I’m not sure. I plan to wear this with some full length black leggings, maybe a black waist belt and probably a black cardigan. I may undo the bottom button though as it’s quite tight around the thigh area when I walk.

SAM_0049Pinafore bubble hem dress - £8.81

I’m undecided about this – I’ll have to take it in under the arms as it’s a bit too loose. I’m not even sure what I would wear this with? Any ideas?

The above were all from Primark, if the crazy prices weren’t a giveaway. I also got some bulk packs of tights and a pair of slippers because I live in a manky student flat with a not very clean floor. The final buy of today. Well:

SAM_0050Skirted Mac trench from New Look - £28 £22.40

My local New Look are doing a 20% student discount until the 18th of October and so I assume most others are as well, hot foot it down there now. This is a very bad picture. Possibly the worst photo I could have ever taken, so here’s a link to it on the website. It’s supposed to be an arctic blue colour, but to my eye it looks more purple – I think it depends on the lighting? I feel a bit like a spy when I wear it though, it’s fun. It’s obviously not a thick mac, and not made out of wool – which I prefer. Wool is not fun to try and dry and I tend to get quite hot walking to places so this is PERFECT.

Sadly, my only other recent purchase has been a TV license. Not glamorous. Not nice. What has everyone else been buying?


Thursday, 24 September 2009

Revisiting BADgal Mascara

badgalImage courtesy of the Benefit website.

Cast your mind back to June.
You might remember that in the middle of June (when it was still sunny!) I did a review on BADgal Lash Mascara and that I wasn’t all that impressed with it. You may also notice that at the bottom of that post I mentioned that leaving mascara alone for a few weeks after first opening it helps out with the formula – I find it makes it thicker and just better to use. I know there’s a bit of a difference between a couple of weeks and three months, but my DiorShow Iconic has finally and truly bit the dust and it’s time to move on. I have no worries about bacteria growing on my mascaras, eye lash curlers etc. as I regularly clean all my tools and check for dodgy smells in my products.

I was completely wrong and right about BADgal. This is the result from the first use back in June:


A little bit of length, but fairly lacklustre and certainly not fit for someone who wants to be glamorous and fab. This was after two applications and layers. So here we go with the new “test”:


No mascara, just curled – for some reason the ends of my lashes have gone ridiculously blonde. I also got a fringe, if anyone’s wondering why there is suddenly a lot of hair in the shot. AND this is the first picture taken for this blog using my new camera that I mentioned previously. I wish I could show you what it could really do! Anyways, back to the point. And with the newly thickened mascara:


I will admit that it doesn’t look all that impressive… until I tell you that this is after just one swipe of a mascara wand! One quick swipe. I was only nipping to Tesco for the newspaper so I wasn’t going all out, but I was incredibly impressed. I used it last night when I was heading out to the bar and did a few coats of short sharp strokes and WOW. I’ll probably take a picture the next time I put on make up properly and show you gals.

Get this mascara when you feel you’re getting at the end of a tube, open it, apply once and then leave until your other mascara finishes – you won’t be disappointed.


Wednesday, 23 September 2009

I will be back.

Very soon! I promise. I have a few posts almost done and now that I’m all settled back in, things can become more regular now.

I’m back at uni, for those of you who have forgotten. I also managed to get my job back in the cinema, and I start on Fridayish. While I’m only at uni six hours a week and my contract is 8 hours a week, that does not mean I have a lot of free time – my 6 hour uni work load is added onto from studying (which I need to do a lot of for one subject in particular! Something ridiculous like 8 hours a week!) and the 8 hour contracted hours at work will probably be at least 12 hours a week. So I have some free time, but not much.

This will alllll lead to a post about time management soon, I’m sure. Expect a short post tomorrow on Benefit’s BADgal mascara (again! I know, but it’s good!) and then a post on Monday, probably a Save, Spend, Splurge!

I hope everyone’s well and settled into university well!


Monday, 7 September 2009

Things I bought today!

I did a quick back to uni shop today, just for a few bits and pieces, mostly something to wear on a night out. I’ve not really had much luck and even now I’m not really pleased with what I even bought – it’s quite rubbish in the shops at the moment.

risparklesRiver Island Shimmer Vest Dress £14.99

I don’t have my own pictures at the moment since I’m just in, but this looks a lot better in real life, I think so at least. It obviously follows the shapes of your body and doesn’t curve back into your lack of bottom legs. It’s also a lot more shimmery and sparkly in real life – though maybe a bit see through. I plan on wearing it with some black leggings or tights and maybe a pop of colour through my shoes.

nlcardiganNew Look Boyfriend Cardigan - £20

Oh look, an identical long cardigan to the black one I bought last week. I really liked the fit and length and had to get another, though the colour of mine is certainly not as rich as this picture shows.

rishoesNew Look Padded Pump - £14

The ones I got were actually a cream colour, but I couldn’t find them on the website, so the black ones will do! I just wanted a nice little casual pair of shoes in a non-black colour just for quick trips about the town. My mother does say that they’re old lady shoes!

nlbagNew Look Twist Lock Bag - £22

I think this is the bag I got, I don’t really remember, but it looks so much better in person. I got this just because I like it. It’s nice a big though.

The reason I got sooo much New Look today was because I had a 20% off voucher, so that made the dent on my overdraft much more bearable. Though I still need leggings and some basic vests.

What has everyone else been buying for back to uni?


Sunday, 6 September 2009

One busy week.

One week from now I will be back in my university town. Excellent. I still have a lot of buying and packing to do, and I need to dye my hair, but that can all wait. It’s been a long week and an even longer weekend. I’m taking the rest of today off to have a bit of a relax.

Again, a reminder that I won’t be posting regularly for a wee while yet. Definitely not for at least another two weeks, so I apologise now for the sporadic posting and the lack of posting as well. I’ll just apologise for everything!

I hope you are all doing well and have had a good week.

If you need something to do, go and watch some of Blance Babcock on YouTube – a wonderful drag queen. You can easily watch his full drag make up tutorial (which is about an hour long) without feeling like it’s been a long time. It’s completely fascinating.