Monday, 29 April 2013

Oh Mickey you're so fine, you're so fine you blow my mind hey Mickey!

Wearing: Oversized denim jacket and t-shirt from Primark
high-waisted shorts from River Island
Shoes by Converse and bag from Clarks outlet;

I'm 23, I can assure you of that, I just have a childish nature that appears to make itself apparent when I dress. I can still get away with this though I think - oh sod it, I bloody hope I can. It was a casual day anyway and,  if all else fails, I'll just wear it at Disneyland whenever that may be. See? Child. I guess this is a bit of a 90's throwback look, especially with that cracking song in the title as covered by Lolly; I was having a jolly old time listening to it the other night whilst drafting this post.

More importantly, the shorts. These shorts were in the most recent River Island mid season sale, the colour immediately caught my eye and once I had a good touchy-feel of the fine corduroy style fabric I was sold. At £10 (after having a panicked run to a different store because the original one I spied them in didn't have my size) the shorts were mine. They are undoubtedly my favourite pair out of any I own. I love the colour despite it being so Winter 12/13 and I love the high waisted flattering and comfortable fit. 

I'm utterly shattered so apologise with the quietness over the past week. I've spent all my time packing up my Nan's house for her, moving her to another, unpacking and settling her in. There's still a lot to do, but she's happy and it certainly feels like home. Whilst she was clearing out her wardrobe and deciding what to chuck in the charity shop bin bag I managed to snag myself some vintage cream 40s/50s gloves, a vintage tartan scarf, a floral blouse and bright pink dress. I'm going to need to do a bit of experimental altering on the latter two but I'm pretty happy, thanks Nan!

Have you got any bargains in the River Island sale? I think it's been a corker, I've bought 2 dresses as well as these shorts and there's so many other amazing things in it. 

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Too Faced Eyeshadow Duo: Rich Bitch

My most bought and used make up item is eyeshadow, there's absolutely no doubt about it. So, when I happened upon this little beauty by sheer coincidence one snowy afternoon as I was listlessly wandering around TK Maxx, I'll admit I got a little excited. I think it was the gorgeous packaging that caught my eye first; a pink, black and yellow retro affair. It was then that I saw the words 'Too Faced' staring up at me and something twigged in the back of my mind that I'd seen other beauty bloggers mention this brand, so I took a closer look. There were only four or five there and I began perusing the shades before settling on 'Rich Bitch'. 

Rich Bitch is a beautiful shimmery 'gold and teal' combo, although I'm not so sure I'd call these colours gold and teal, maybe more soft lemon and steel blue. I love the initial contrast between the warm and cool shades but once you swatch, you realise just how prominent the gold undertone to the blue is which is lovely. It didn't take a lot for that colour pay off - pigmentation ahoy! - but I'd say you need a good brush to apply it to the lids if you want it to be that intense; they melt together beautifully when blending and once on, they stayed all day without primer. I did find my MUA primer made it crease awfully. They are buttery smooth and I just can't remember the last time I felt an eyeshadow like it. Using a formula like this really does make you realise what you're missing out on/gotten used to with MUA shadows, and I'm a fan!

TK Maxx have the RRP of this product down as £17 and I've seen it selling online recently at around £14, but I swiped it for £3.99! Money saving me was very happy.

Would I repurchase? A thousand times yes. I'm on the look-out for more shades. 

Have you tried any Too Faced products or found yourself some cracking savings in TK Maxx? I'd love to know!

(Apologies for the creased sheets in these photos, that's a little embarrassing).

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Keeping Up Appearances - The Rise of Male Grooming

Do you have to race your male counterparts to the bathroom? Or do you find you skincare and haircare products mysteriously disappearing? It's becoming apparent that men are putting aside more time for male grooming and priding themselves on their appearances, and I'd love to know your thoughts and experiences.

Apparently, on average, women spend between 20-40 minutes getting ready each day and, depending on what I'm doing and where I'm going, I definitely fit into this category. Washing and drying my hair can take twenty minutes by itself because it's so long and thick, but adding a bath or shower and makeup into the equation as well as moisturising and whatnot definitely pushes me to the far end of the scale. Would you believe, though, that men are starting to take even longer than that? We have makeup to sort and longer hair to curl/straighten/style yet they are somehow still trumping us. A quick search immediately brought me the results I was looking for, the average time it takes for a man to get ready is 83 minutes. Wow. I'm not sure how I'd feel if my other half took longer than me to get ready when going out, I'm so used to him sitting there waiting for me and rolling his eyes that it would be quite a shock and very weird; yet I can kind of believe that statistic.

While I prefer to jump in and out of the bath as quick as possible, my boyfriend will easily fall asleep in a steaming hot bath for an hour. I don't think he does too badly on the grooming part, he's very conscious about his hair and will quite often focus on his while I just bung mine up. He owns a few hair products and happily uses my dry shampoo and hairspray and owns his own pair of GHD's (this saves me having to borrow mine back from my brother - I know!) Recently I've been persuading him to take care of his skin with moisturiser because he's complaining of dry skin and breakouts, but to no avail quite yet.

I always remember the comedic portrayal of male grooming in FRIENDS. Chandler getting a pedicure, Joey having his eyebrows waxed and plucked and Ross getting a spray tan and having his teeth whitened (you have to give those episodes a watch). Media representations have, however, evolved since the 90's - TOWIE and MIC do a great job of reinforcing that men can enjoy beauty too and, based on a survey by First4Lawyers, 20% of men have sustained an injury whilst using a sunbed... I don't want to know how... or what!

All jokes and digs aside though, personally, it makes me really happy to see men taking pride in themselves by embracing a beauty regime no matter how small - it makes me feel great knowing a guy has made an effort for me. It's fantastic that society is finally opening it's eyes and saying 'yes, men like to take care of themselves - so what?!' Male grooming products are becoming much more commonplace and, while there are many more products specifically designed for men with masculine and powerful names endorsed by good looking male celebs, there is also more acceptance of the fact that men can use womens products. Times have obviously changed and, while we still may have a quick joke about men stealing our products or seeing the inside of the bathroom/salon more than us, it's great to move away from this 'girly' and overly feminine ridiculing. It almost makes me angry that pride in appearance and 'vanity' are considered a female trait, why can't guys look good too?

So I'd really love to know, how do you like your fellas? Would you mind a man in your life borrowing your products? Or do you think a man should be a man with their 'rough and ready' and 'blokey' exterior? Is this shift in the social paradigm and media representation for the better meaning guys can now take time on their appearances without pressure or funny looks? Opinions? 

*Partnered post, content written by myself.

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

She's Just a Loner with a Sexy Attitude.

Wearing: Midi Dress from FD Avenue
Biker Jacket from New Look and 
Hi-top Wedge Trainers from Primark.

I may have to put myself on a serious ban from wearing this jacket when I'm going to do outfit posts; I think it's featured in almost all of them so far but it goes with everything! It's quite a good job I don't do one every day really because there is a high probability it'd be there again and again (avec my jogging bottoms which are not used for jogging). I'm quite late with posting this look actually, it's been on the Look Street Style website and the FD Avenue blog for quite a while now so I thought I'd leave a little time before posting it here and, well - I forgot.

I'd been eyeing up midi dresses for a heck of a long time yet putting off buying out of fear of the length making my legs look short and stumpy. Just before Christmas I threw caution to the wind and took the plunge with this amazing monochrome skull number and with a 50% off code it cost a little over £7. Ker-ching! I couldn't quite believe how bold the print was so was understandably terrified whether I could pull it off or not but, as soon as I slipped it on, I fell in lust. I silently rejoiced as I looked at myself in the mirror as my legs didn't look like they belonged to a Corgi after all! Generally though, I think you should be safe if you find a midi that rests just below your knees rather than mid-calf. I paired it with these hi top wedge trainers for a colour accent and to make my calves look slightly elongated - just incase. 

Do you all love the midi dress trend, or are you finding it a bit tiresome?  

You wonderful readers can get 20% off at FD Avenue by entering the code MONTAGE20 at the checkout.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Bunny Loving

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter/Bank Holiday weekend. At long last the sun is out, even if it is still a tiny bit nippy; there is promise in the air that Summer is on the way, I can smell it. I made Easter nests - the best Easter treat in my opinion - did a bit of pottering about in the garden and rabbit shed with Phil and did an education morning at Cineworld in Cambridge about rabbits NOT being good Easter gifts for children, that a hutch is not enough and adopting is better than buying. 

Keeping with the theme I thought I'd share the custom iPhone case from Caseapp that I won in Jaz xo's  giveaway last month. I was super excited to get straight down to it and start designing my case, I knew I wanted a bunny theme as I'm quite clearly a crazy bunny lady, so it was only appropriate. I initially designed the case with a photo I'd taken of my two but, when it came to it, the design interface told me the image was too small. It was a good quality jpeg as it was taken on my DSLR but I didn't want to risk it, so I went with my second choice, a tiled background image I created in photoshop. 

Here it is! Eep!
Isn't it cute? I absolutely adore it. It came out in the exact colours I had uploaded and the quality is great. You can feel where the rabbits are printed on the background colour so I just hope they don't scratch off easily from being in and out of my pockets constantly. You can choose from transparent, white, black, light pink, dark pink and cyan blue sides and as you can see, I went with transparent. You can add text and upload more than one image which is great if you want to create a collage and you can resize images to your heart's content. They're only £19 and, considering I paid £30 for my other iPhone case and considering personalised items are normally more highly priced, these are great value. This case is much thinner than my other one so this will be reserved for my non clumsy days, but I look forward to being able to change my cases around like I would my bags. 
Personalised cases certainly aren't what they used to be are they? I remember being a teen with a Nokia 3200 which came with a 'cutter' that could be used to cut photos and pictures to the right size to pop inside the clear case. I tried it with a Busted picture from a magazine and I'm pretty sure I failed miserably. 

Writing this I've just polished off a Cadbury's rabbit. Yum.

Have any of you tried custom phone cases?