My Favourite Beauty Blogs of 2013!

Make-up

A few months ago when I started this little blog, I never could have imagined the supportive, lovely and genuinely helpful blogging community out there on the vast expanse of the internet. One of my favourite things about blogging, aside from the writing has been learning about and interacting with many different bloggers. You can see my post about how to use Twitter chats to network with other bloggers here: http://bit.ly/1gMiDP0

We all share a passion for displaying our thoughts and opinions on a wide array of subjects and providing honest and useful content for our readers, whom very often are bloggers themselves.

While there are thousands of blogs and bloggers out there, the blogging world still feels very intimate. I can’t underestimate the excitement of seeing a new comment on a blog post I worked so hard on, or the value gained from the new follower on Twitter who you can swap blog links with. I know many bloggers will feel the same.

Having your own small space of the internet to share your creativity, broadcast the thoughts that overrun in your head and project your passion for words and photography really is so special and something we should enjoy cultivating with our readers and fellow bloggers. By appreciating and helping one another, we can all reach our blogging hopes and dreams that much quicker.

With this in mind if you’re a blogger like me or a reader of my blog, (thank you!) I would like to share (in no particular order) just some of my favourite beauty and lifestyle blogs of last year and the content they worked so hard on.

Read their posts and if you like them, follow their blog, share their posts, email a useful post to a friend or just post a thoughtful comment that really will make that bloggers day…

1) Autumn Leaves

I recently discovered Rebecca’s lovely blog, Autumn Leaves and I’m so glad I did. It has everything you want in a beauty blog- beautiful clear photos, in-depth reviews of products you have been desperate to try and a mix of high-end and more affordable beauty buys to suit all her readers.Her best of 2013 posts are a must read to show you the beauty gems of last year and her lifestyle posts are so well researched and useful.

Some of my favourite posts of Rebecca’s include her advice for beauty bloggers which I am personally using to help me develop my blog: http://bit.ly/1bGq4CL and her amazingly detailed post about moving out which offers such good advice for someone taking that big step: http://bit.ly/1lGZajB.

2) She Might Be Loved

She Might Be Loved  is a beauty blog run by the fabulous Georgina and always manages to get the similarly named Maroon 5 song stuck in my head every time I have a read! Georgina’s make-up looks are truly amazing and she really is so talented with the make-up brushes!

Her beauty tutorials show you how to create her dramatic and flawless makeup looks and her Halloween looks were also nothing short of incredible!  Georgina works at beauty blogger’s favourite Lush so you also see some lovely posts and an insider’s view of their smellies and latest bath collections!

Check out her party makeup look for some amazing beauty inspiration: http://bit.ly/1f3oDpU

3) Through Chelsea’s Eyes

I first came across Chelsea’s blog, Through Chelsea’s Eyes after watching some of her amazing Youtube videos. I actually got chatting to Chelsea on Twitter as I’ve been thinking about venturing into the scary world of Youtube for a while now and she sent me some really useful and much appreciated advice about how to start making videos! Take a look at her fantastic Youtube channel where she regularly posts ‘Get Ready With Me’, ‘Monthly Favourites’ and ‘Haul’ videos: http://bit.ly/1a7Zl62

Back to her blog, Chelsea uses her gorgeously girly platform to post her beautiful outfits to give us all some style inspiration, and lots of make-up reviews, with a particular fondness for Mac lipstick posts!

4) Thou Shalt Not Covet

After writing my contribution in a colab with lots of other beauty bloggers on Michelle’s blog, Thou Shalt Not Covet on our most wished for Christmas beauty product, (http://bit.ly/1cwXSCo) Michelle’s blog became a regular read of mine.

I love her mixture of outfit and jewellery posts and her detailed make-up reviews always feature great swatches. Seeing a glimpse into Michelle’s beautiful family life is lovely and as a newbie blogger, I’m especially looking forward to reading her ‘Blogging for Beginners’ series which is starting soon!

5) Josephine Nycole

While the blogs I’ve mentioned above are all UK based beauty blogs, I also really enjoying reading the thoughts of beauty bloggers from across the globe. One of my favourites is American beauty blog Josephine Nycole.

Nykki, as she likes to be known supports fellow bloggers by helping to host regular blog hops and has lots of beauty posts to enjoy. I particularly love her reviews on much lusted after make-up products such as this really detailed review on the beautiful Urban Decay Naked 3: http://bit.ly/1a84nzi

I hope you enjoyed reading about some of my favourite blogs of 2013 and will enjoy checking out the blogs I love just as much as me.

What are your favourite beauty blogs? 

Alice xxx

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Clothes Show Live 2013! – My Experience

Clothes Show Live At The NEC Birmingham.

Clothes Show Live at the NEC Birmingham.

I consider 7am far too early for any self-respecting person to rise on a Sunday morning, but the first week of December saw my doing just that. One coach that failed to stop, a taxi, a short train ride and a two hour drive later, I had arrived at The Clothes Show Live 2013 with my mum and sister in tow!

After being subjected to the £10.00 car-parking fee (a bit steep considering we had paid thirty pounds each for a ticket), we hopped on the free bus provided to arrive at the entrance to the venue, The NEC in Birmingham.

The Clothes Show is best described as a five day fashion and beauty showcase, with shops to splurge in, new brands to discover, fashion shows to watch and celebrities to rub shoulders with! The Show celebrated its 25th anniversary this year, so this is clearly a winning formula! Indeed, as soon as we entered, we were greeted with an arena packed full to the brim with clothes shops, makeup stalls and catwalk areas- basically a fashion and beauty obsessive’s dreamIt looked like it was going to be worth the early wake-up call…

One Of The Shows On The Day.

One Of The Shows On The Day.

It was my first time ever attending the Clothes Show Live and overall, I had a fantastic day and would definitely love to go back to the Clothes Show next year. See my top Clothes Show tips and my haul below:

My Top Five Clothes Show Tips! 

I composed a short list of my tips on how to make the most of your day if you’re planning on attending the show next year.

 1) Wear Flat Shoes! -With a seemingly endless arena to get around and plenty of shopping to be done, comfortable, flat shoes are a must for you to make the most of your day!

2) Bring your own food! -This will save you money on the limited and expensive food options I saw on offer at the show. Further, having a packed-lunch you can easily eat while walking around will mean you don’t waste precious shopping time queuing for food! Also, note that the choices available for specialist dietary requirements were very limited.

3) Bring the cash you are planning to spend with you! -There’s limited cash-points available at the show and the cash-machines there often have long queues and charge you for the withdrawal. Bringing the money you wsant to spend rather than putting it on the plastic also means you will think more about what you’re spending and are less likely to overspend!

4) Take a camera or phone to take photographs with! -There’s plenty of opportunities to get snapped with your favourite celeb at the show so you you can get that perfect shot at one of the organised meet and greet sessions!

5) Arrange a meeting place with your companions! -The Show covers a massive area and it’s so easy to get separated from your friends while you’re all browsing at different stalls. I found the mobile phone signal to be surprisingly bad inside so it’s possible you may not be able to contact your companions if you lose sight of them. Arranging a central place to meet if you can’t find each other means you can split up without worrying where everyone is!

My Clothes Show Haul! 

All My Shopping!

Now on to what you’ve all been waiting for- what I bought! As a serial shopaholic, I was actually surprised to have some cash left at the end of the day! I certainly took up the opportunity to buy more (and probably unnecessary) makeup however! The deals on the beauty stands were amazing and were certainly the highlight of the shopping for me! There were lots of different beauty brands to choose from at prices you would never see in the shops! The December show dates also meant it was the perfect time to pick up some Christmas stocking fillers (or just buy gifts for yourself like me…)

I have to admit, I was pretty disappointed with the clothes and accessories for sale, as being at The Clothes Show, I would have expected the offerings to be a bit more…well fashionable. The clothes stalls had a mostly market- place kind of vibe as a lot of what was on offer looked a bit cheap and un-original and many of the stands seemed to be selling the same things.

So here’s all my Clothes Show buys…

 Cosmopolitan and Company Magazine Goody Bag.

My Goody Bag From Cosmopolitan And Company Magazine.

My Goody Bag from Cosmopolitan and Company Magazine.

Having paid my £3.00 for this goody bag in advance when I bought my Clothes Show tickets, I was very excited to pick this up on the day! I was however, really disappointed with what was included.

Let’s take a look at the contents:

The Contents Of The Cosmopolitan And Company Magazine Goody Bag.

The Contents of The Cosmopolitan and Company Magazine Goody Bag.

So included in the goody bag was: The December issues of Cosmopolitan and Company Magazines and a Men’s Health Christmas 2013 Gift Guide for Him, a rather bizarre tasting lemon and mint drink (which I drank at the show), a mini Andrex Toilet Tissue, two sachets of Kenco Millicano Instant Coffee, one Lindt Lindor Chocolate, a sachet of James Bond 007 Quantum Aftershave, a small tube of Colgate Max White One Toothpaste and a mini Rimmel Stay Matte Foundation. 

Although in terms of value for money the goody bag was worth buying as Cosmopolitan and Company Magazine together retail for well over £3.00, I was expecting more from my favourite magazines. I was certainly surprised to see toilet paper included and a sample of men’s aftershave was also a strange choice for a goody bag from a women’s magazine.

The best picks from the bag were the mini toothpaste and foundation– although the foundation was perhaps a poor choice as the colour ‘Ivory’ included would only suit some of their reader’s skin tones. All in all, I think this was a poor effort for a ‘goody bag’ and the magazines were the only inclusion I will actually enjoy.

– Barry M Goody Bag

The Goody Bag From Barry M.

The Goody Bag from Barry M.

I’m pleased to say I wasn’t let down by Barry M and their goody bag was definitely worth their £10.00 charge! Their stall was easily one of the busiest in the beauty section and it’s easy to see why when you see what was in the bag:

Barry M Bag Contents!

Barry M Bag Contents!

There were slightly different products included in the goody bags but I was really pleased with the selection I received. My bag held an intense black mascara, a lipgloss, several eye-pencils, two dazzle-dusts and a selection of their infamous nail paints. 

The nail polishes alone retail for £2.99 each so this bag of treats was a real bargain! Barry M is one of my favourite beauty brands so I can’t wait to try out all the products in my bag!

Models Own Goody Bag

Models Own Goody Bag.

Models Own Goody Bag.

Models Own Goody Bag Contents.

Models Own Goody Bag Contents.

The Models Own goody bag was another great £10.00 buy at the show! There were rows upon rows of nail polish colours to choose from and you could choose any three you liked to go with your free gifts. I chose red, white and black glitter polishes for the Christmas season and received a goody bag with them including a copy of Closer Magazine, a bubblegum flavour lip-balm, eye-shadow applicators, four eye-pencils, a purple powder eye-shadow, a nail file and buffer, a pocket mirror and the official Models Own Clothes Show nail polish. 

This was my favourite buy from the show as not only were you able to pick which three polishes you wanted, but the goody bag contents were absolutely amazing for the mere price of £10.00! 

Jelly Pong Pong Goody Bag

Jelly Pong Pong

Jelly Pong Pong Beauty Bags.

Jelly Pong Pong Beauty Bags Contents.

Jelly Pong Pong Beauty Bags Contents.

Jelly Pong Pong isn’t a brand I’ve tried before so I can’t wait to sample the products included in my beauty bags! I love the quirky name of the brand and the packaging on the products is pretty and colourful. Included in my beauty bags was a bronzer duo, an illuminating palette , a 2 in 1 eye-pencil and eye-shadow and a lip and cheek stain. Best of all, it was only £5.00 for two goody bags which was certainly too good to miss!

Sleep In Rollers Gift Set

My Pink Sleep In Rollers!

My Pink Sleep In Rollers!

I’ve wanted to try Sleep In Rollers for a long time so I was really excited to see them for sale at the show. This set was just £10.00 and included the gorgeous pink glitter rollers set, a velour pouch with kirby grips, an instructional DVD and two reusable bags! The exact same set is on the Sleep In Rollers website for £29.99 so I’m really pleased with my buy! I’m planning on doing a review post when I try out these rollers so I hope they meet my high expectations! 

Candy Kittens Bauble

My Candy Kittens Bauble!

My Candy Kittens Bauble!

As a massive Made in Chelsea and Jamie Laing Fan, the pink-filled Candy Kittens stall was a must visit! I picked up this pink bauble for my tree for £5.00 so here’s hoping for a ‘Candy Christmas!’ 

Oh My Love Top And Skirt 

Oh My Love Top And Skirt.

Oh My Love Top And Skirt.

Although I wasn’t overly impressed with most of the clothes stalls, I did spot this gorgeous, glittery top and matching skirt on the Oh My Love Stand! At just £20 for the set, I think this sparkly outfit is perfect for the festive season and I love that I can wear it together and as separates!

Did you go to the Clothes Show this year or are you planning on attending next year? I’d love to know your thoughts in the comments! 

Alice xx

How Much Is My Face Worth?

Buying makeup is an expensive necessity for most of us, but how much money are we really spending on our face?

Well, after seeing this tag covered by many of my favourite beauty bloggers and feeling particularly inspired by Subtle Coral’s version, I decided to give it a go!

So I began  the rather scary task of finding out how much my daily makeup routine was costing me!  I’m rather glad this didn’t count my shameful and ever-growing makeup collection, because the results of this were pretty eye-opening! I also didn’t include skincare or makeup tools so my total is purely for the makeup products I would use on a day to day basis!

The  products in this post are what I would normally use for glamorous (but not ott) everyday makeup. Though I must admit this makeup look is for the (sometimes rare) times when I listen to the alarm clock and get up early enough to put my full ‘face’ on!

So here it goes…

All my Makeup!

All my daily makeup!

Face Products

My Face Makeup!

Daily Face Makeup!

Smashbox Photo Finish More than Primer Blemish Control- £28.00

Smashbox Liquid Halo HD Foundation in shade 3-  £27.50

Bourjois Delice de Poudre Bronzing Powder- £6.99

Rimmel Stay Matte Pressed Powder in Shade 006 warm beige- £3.99

Collection Lasting Perfect Concealer in Shade 3 Medium £4.19

Sleek Blush in shade Rose Gold- £4.49

Total: £75.16

Eye Products

Daily eye makeup!

Daily Eye Makeup!

Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion (comes free with Urban Decay naked palette)

Urban Decay Original Naked Eyeshadow Palette £37.00

Loreal Volume Million Excess Mascara in Black £10.99

Rimmel Scandaleyes Lycra Flex Mascara in Black £6.99 (yes I feel I must use two mascaras…)

HD Brow Palette in Vamp £19.96

Rimmel Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Liner Pencil in shade 061 Jet Black £2.99

Barry M Waterproof Gel Eyeliner in Black- £5.49

Total: £83.42

Lip products

Daily lip products!

Daily Lip Products!

Maybelline Baby Lips lip balm in Peach Kiss £2.99

Sally Hansen Lip Inflation Lip Plumper £6.39

 Total: £9.38

Grand Total: £167.96

My £166 Face!

My £167.96 Face!

Although my total is pretty terrifying. These products will (hopefully) last me a very long time so I should get my money’s worth! Also, the prices listed are at the standard RRP and I know I will have taken advantage of some store deals to get some of my products for cheaper than their full price!

I tag these bloggers and all you other lovely people to work out how much your face is worth! :

  1. Lisa from http://lisabella-x.blogspot.co.uk
  2. Shay from http://www.whatsontheblog.co.uk
  3. Martyne from http://www.goingtheextrastyle.com
  4. Gabriella from http://brightongirlblogger.com
  5. Scarlett from http://scarlettlondon.com
  6. Kate from http://www.prettylittleus.com

£15 Christmas Party Makeup Look!

I challenged myself to buy all the makeup needed to create a gorgeous Christmas party look…for just £15!

This wasn’t an easy task and I spent a long time browsing the beauty shelves to choose products that I could also use for all my winter nights out!

In total I spent £14.27 and took advantage of Superdrug’s 3 for 2 offer on all makeup where I purchased all the products used to be able to meet my target!

I bought the MUA powder on another day also in Superdrug to bring my total to just under £15!

I was really impressed with all the makeup I used- especially the MUA eyeshadows which were beautiful colours, easy to apply and packed with glitter for the perfect Christmas makeover!

It just shows you don’t need to spend a fortune on makeup to look a million dollars!

See the receipts below for full prices and savings!

SAM_0891

Here are the products I used to create my cheap but chic look:

1) Foundation:  Miss Sporty So Matte Perfect Stay Foundation in Shade 003 Medium.

Price: £3.49 GBP

2) Eyeshadows:  MUA Eyeshadow Palette in Glitter Ball. 

Price: £4.00 GBP

eyeshadow

3) Eye Liner:  Rimmel London Soft Kohl Kajal Eye Liner Pencil in 061 Jet Black. 

Price: £2.99 GBP

SAM_0887

4) Mascara:  MUA Mega Volume Mascara in Black. 

Price: £3.00 GBP

5) Bronzer:  Collection Shimmering Glow Powder in 5 Sunkissed. 

Price: £2.79 GBP

6) Lipstick:  NYC Expert Last Lip Color in Shade 441 Traffic Jam.

Price: £1.99 GBP

7) Powder:  MUA Pressed Powder in Shade 4.

Price: £1.00 GBP

powder

Check out my video below to see how to use all these products to create a glittery and glamorous full Christmas Party Makeup look for just £15!

The Completed Look!

The Completed Look!

Boots ‘The Return of the Advantage Card’ event.

The eve of Halloween seemed like the perfect opportunity to buy some new makeup to create the trademark gothic look. Myself and a friend attended the Boots store Halloween advantage card event on Queens Road, Cardiff. Here advantage card holders could pick up £12  worth of advantage points, when they spent over £50 pound on the night! We also received free makeovers at the Smashbox counter which made our evening even better!

Here’s some photos from the event:

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Bunny Free Beauty- Cruelty-Free Makeup Brands.

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Being both an animal lover and a beauty obsessive, I was keen to discover which beauty brands do not test their products on animals.

There are many cruelty-free makeup brands out there, meaning you can follow the latest beauty trends without harming innocent animals. 

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How to identify cruelty free makeup brands.

– There still remains debate over which brands are cruelty free as many brands have their own definition of animal testing and vegan makeup products. Ultimately, people must decide for themselves which brands meet their personal definition of cruelty-free cosmetics. 

-You can use the following resources to find cosmetics that have satisfied standards determined by the leaping bunny scheme and The People for The Ethical Treatment of Animals guidelines:

– The leaping bunny logo is the international standard placed on beauty products to show they are entirely cruelty-free. Products labelled with the logo of the leaping bunny must conform to rigorous standards meaning the product ingredients have not been tested on animals at any stage. A list of cosmetics brands recognised as cruelty-free by the leaping bunny logo are available by following this link: http://www.gocrueltyfree.org/search?product-type=cosmetics&country=231

– The People for The Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) also have their own system of classifying cruelty-free brands. They have produced some really useful lists of which companies do and which companies don’t test on animals. This can be accessed here: http://www.peta.org/living/beauty-and-personal-care/companies/default.aspx