Thursday, 27 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of hair changes

I am heading of this weekend to my cousin's wedding.  As such I will be expected to behave and look a certain way around my family (read aunts, uncles and most importantly grandparents).  Therefor I said goodbye to my much loved ombred hair and dyed it back to its original brown.  I didn't want to but I did it, I was convinced I would find it boring and that it wouldn't feel like 'me'.

Thankfully I was wrong.  I love it, not more or less than the ombre; exactly the same.  It makes my hair look a lot longer and makes me feel a little bit darker.  I think I will definitely be getting into more autumnal makeup now.  Tomorrow will definitely feature black eyeliner and berry stained lips.  It always amazes me how something as simple as changing the colour of your hiar can make you feel so different.

What has been making you happy today?

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of puddles

Today it rained, not just a little bit, a lot.  Luckily I had my beautiful Ella Doran umbrella (which you can see in this haul post) which kept me nice and dry.  Except for my feet.  My feet were soaked through because despite my age and the fact that I should know better I cannot stop myself from jumping in puddles.

The horrible squelchy feeling that I had to suffer all the way home wasn't enough to put me off.  I wonder if jumping in puddles will ever lose its wonderful rebelliousness.  Though if i'm honest, I highly doubt it.

What has been making you happy today?

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of unexpected kindnesses

Today I was picked up from the train station by my rather lovely sister which meant I didn't have to walk home in the rain.  Although she was already doing me a massive favour she had also stopped by the shops to get me something to eat as she, correctly, guessed that I wouldn't have had time to eat at university.  What an angel.

These unexpected moments of kindness really do remind me of the fact that the world is full of wonderful people.  I think I need to take a leaf out of her book and try to catch someone by surprise with my own little acts of kindness.

What has been making you happy today?

Monday, 24 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of random knowledge

I may have mentioned before that me and my friends are regulars at out local pub's Monday night quiz.  I have now been going almost every week for three months.  Our team have never won in this time (although we came second by half a point once - very frustrating).  We didn't win tonight either, however each member of our team managed to answer their own 'oooh I know this question'.  We all have them but I rarely remember the correct answer in time.  Tonight the question which would have haunted me was: 'Who was the merchant in Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice?'*.  I know it seems silly but all of us were really pleased with ourselves despite only coming fourth.  Sometimes it is the random information you collect over a lifetime that gives you the most joy.

*It was Antonio if you were wondering

What has been making you happy today?'

Sunday, 23 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of unexpected fun

Last night a friend invited me and the rest of our group to a charity barn dance that her family were partially involved in organizing.  She begged us to come so that she could be saved from a night of having her parents' friends asking her questions about her love life.  As tempted as we were to make her suffer through that we all agreed to go.

So we donned our best cowgirl gear and prepared for a not so wild Saturday night out.  My friend  apologized profusely the entire journey there for the boring night that she had inflicted upon us.   However when we got there we were all pleasantly surprised by what a nice time we had.  There was dancing, a raffle, burgers and cow print balloons.

On the way how we all marveled at how much fun we had had.  I'm sure it is all a matter of expectations but I sometimes find that the best nights out aren't the ones you expect.

What has been making you happy today?

Saturday, 22 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of rekindled friendships

Today I met up with someone who I have barely spoken to in a few months.  At one time we were best friends but time and certain disagreements meant that we drifted apart.  Before we both finished university we had been making the effort to get back in touch yet when we were both in the same area we didn't speak or see each other.

Then on Monday she text me out of the blue asking if I wanted to catch up.  It turns out she thought I was avoiding her and I had thought she was avoiding me.  Once that little misunderstanding had been cleared up everything got a bit easier.  We ended up chatting about everything and nothing for over five hours and it reminded me of how we were when we were teenagers.  I am so glad that she text me that day and that I have the opportunity to have her in my life again.

What has been making you happy today?

Friday, 21 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of comfy sofas

Today me and a friend went to Costa for a drink and a catch up.  Now I am often mocked for the fact that I don't drink caffeine* so whenever I am catching with a friend Costa is my coffee shop of choice due to their amazing iced drinks.  I have been known to order these on snow days (much to the amusement of the boy behind the counter).  Today I went for the vanilla cooler which is basically an iced version or a milkshake.  Delicious though I did get the dreaded brain freeze a few times.  Inside the shop they have the kind of leather sofas that almost swallow you up.  We sat all snuggled into the sofa drinking our drinks and having a good natter until we realized that everyone else had left and that the staff were probably hoping to close up soon.  I often find that a comfy sofa helps me to relax, that combined with a friendly face helped me let go of some of the stress I have been feeling and make a few big decisions that needed deciding.

*This isn't a health thing.  I just don't like tea or coffee and therefore caffeine in energy drinks or fizzy drinks effects me in a big way.  It is for the sanity of everyone around me that I try to steer clear.

Beauty Formulas Cooling Mist - Poundland Review

I am a bit of a poundland fiend.  It combines some of my favourite things; bargains and experimenting. Sometimes the things I buy turn out to be worth the pound I paid (or in some cases not even that)  but every now and again I find something which is, in my opinion, worth so much more.  One such item is the Beauty Formulas body and face cooling mist.  It is essentially water in a can.  It doesn't sound very exciting but it is something which I repurchase over and over again.

Here you can see two different types of packaging but they are exactly the same; same ingredients, same amount, just totally the same.  The one on the left is, I believe the newer packaging, the one on the right I have had for a ages now and it is almost all gone.  During summer I was going through about one of these a month but that has gone down since the weather became a bit cooler.  I used to keep one in my bag when I went to the beach so that I could cool down as well as one by my bed.  Now however I only have one on my beside table and the one on the left a backup.  I use it when I am feeling hot, when I want a pick me up first thing in the morning, when my hair has started to frizz and on top of my makeup when it is looking a little cakey.  It is, in my humble opinion, better than a pump spray because you get such a fine mist.  

I think I can honestly say that I will always have at least one of these on the go for the foreseeable future.  A definite thumbs up from me.

Have you tried this product?

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of laughter

Today I was told by one of my lecturers that when we laugh we release serotonin.  This serotonin then helps us learn better.  The moral of their story was therefore that we should laugh at the beginning of lectures.  She followed this up by showing us a selection of youtube videos which and no link to what we were studying but did make us laugh.  i'm not sure if it made me learn better but it certainly made the lecture more enjoyable and I am looking forward to seeing what the next installment will be.

I was also raising mys serotonin levels when I saw friends this evening.  I often find that the best night are the ones where there is a laid back atmosphere, a bottle of wine and some of my very best friends.  At times I thought I would stop breathing I was laughing so much and to think it all started with a little text.  'Who fancies grabbing a drink tonight?'

What has been making you happy today?

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of sneaky dancing

Now that I am back at university I have a horrifyingly long commute of 3 hours each way.  Of this 1 hour is spent walking, 10 minutes is spent on a train, 40 minutes are spent waiting for trains/buses and 1 hour and 10 minutes are spent on a bus.

Overall its a little be horrendous and involves me getting up at 5.50 just to make it to my 9am lectures.  however there are some positives.

  1. It is a huge motivation to start learning to drive again (I had a little ankle mishap and even though it is now, 4 months later, healed I am a little bit anxious)
  2. It is one of those love to hate things, like a Disney villain.
  3. It gives me time to read my notes or do seminar prep
  4. I get to listen to music and have secret bus discos
Number for is obviously the best part of my daily 6 hours of travel.  Today on the way home I was sat at the back of the bus (like a rebel) and having a wonderful little dance to some of my favourite songs. All the other passengers were looking forward and as such had no idea of the fun I was having, which meant it only delighted me more.  It made me feel as though I was getting away with something that I shouldn't be doing.   Another bonus was that it meant I could, quite literally, shake off the energy that I had accumulated through a day of sitting quietly listening to lectures.

Do you have anything you like to get away with?

What has been making you happy today?

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of first days

There is something simultaneously both exciting and terrifying about first days.  Today was my first day at my new university and I spent most of the 2 hour bus journey there worrying about things.  Did I have everything I needed?  Did I look ok?  Did I remember to lock the front door?  Will the other students be friendly?

As horrible as it is to spend time worrying it just made me that much happier when I realized that everything was ok and that I had the answers to those questions that were bothering me.

Did I have everything I needed?
Yes and more.  (sunglasses and umbrella anyone?)

 Did I look ok?
I looked fine, not amazing, but that isn't really what university is about anyway.

Did I remember to lock the front door?
Yes, thankfully.  I never usually worry about this but yet today of all days it popped into my head - typical.

 Will the other students be friendly?
Of course they were.  I went and had lunch with four other students and they were all really lovely.  One girl in particular I really clicked with and we spent a lot of time giggling in between lectures.

In a nut shell that is why I love first days so much.  That moment when the worry gives way and you realize you are at the beginning of a really exciting time in your life.  There isn't much else that gives you that feeling.

Monday, 17 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of coziness

I woke up this morning feeling rather under the weather so in a very Jane Austen way 'took to the bed'.  So far the list of things that have been keeping me cozy today includes:

  • A Slanket 
  • My duvet
  • My quilt
  • My Ermintrude hot water bottle
  • An oversized jumper
  • A university hoodie
I am going to a friends house this evening for her birthday and we have been told to bring warm clothes.  If i'm honest I am tempted to take:
  • A Slanket 
  • My duvet
  • My quilt
  • My Ermintrude hot water bottle
  • An oversized jumper
  • A university hoodie
I just love that feeling of being cocooned and cozy in bed.  It almost makes being ill worth it.  Almost, but not quite.

Latest in Beauty - Box 1 Review

I told you all on in this post on Wednesday that I had been naughty and ordered some samples from Latest in Beauty.  Well this morning I heard a slight thud as it was dropped through the letterbox and I practically ran to open it.  I really do love getting things in the post, especially when it is lovely beauty things.

So what did I get inside it?

I got two 1ml samples of Creme Divine a product from L'Occitane.  This seems to have really good review and has a couple of awards under its belt as well.  I'm really glad I chose this as one of my samples.  The full sized 50ml pot retails at a whopping £67 making these two sachets worth £1.34 each.

Next up is a product from a company called Elemental Herbology.  I received three 2ml samples of one of their products, Cell Food.  I chose this sample because I was interested to try a facial serum plus it is always nice to try out new brands.  The full sized bottle is sold for , again quite a lot, £42 for 30ml.  making the sachets I have worth £2.80 each.

The final thing was a surprise to me as I opted to receive a 'mystery sample'.  I am so glad I did as it is something I have been wanting to try for a while now - the Advanced Night Repair from Estee Lauder. I received a very generous five 1.5ml samples.  The 30ml bottle of this sells for £44.00 making my sachets worth £2.20 each.  

I am so glad that I ordered this box, these are all things I am excited to try and none of them are things I would want to purchase at full price without trying them first.  It is nice to have a little bit of budget luxury in my life.  I paid £1.50 for the box and the contents are worth £22.08.  I will definitely be getting another one of these when new samples come out.

I will post reviews of these products when I have tried them out.

Sun In - A review

A couple of months ago I decided to ombre my hair at home.  It turned out pretty well, not perfect but I was more than happy with the results considering I had paid a fraction of the price of going to the hairdressers.  I did have a few struggles with getting it back into good condition though.  

A couple of weeks ago I though it might be nice to make my hair a little bit lighter all over (the one weekend of sun we had tricked me into wanting summer hair).  So off I popped to Superdrug.  I had been tempted by the John Frieda Go Blonder spray but then I decided that it must be similar to the rather unglamourous Sun In.  As Sun In was also on offer I was helpless to resist, I was really excited to try it, I even mentioned it in this post.

Maybe my expectations were too high, maybe I'm doing it wrong or maybe it just doesn't work because for me this did nothing. Nada. Nilch.  I even used it 3 times to try and get even the slightest effect.  So now all I am left with is half a bottle of Sun In (which doesn't even look pretty on my shelf), hair exactly the same colour and a purse that is 4 pounds lighter.

So would I buy this again?  That would be a resounding no.  I know it wasn't particularly expensive and I wasn't expecting it to be amazing but I did expect it to do something.  

What do you think of Sun In?

Sunday, 16 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of old friends

Today I had a lovely surprise phone call from an old friend who I haven't spoken to in quite a while.  Its terrible but sometimes life just gets in the way and things you mean to do get pushed to the back of a seemingly endless to do list.

We spoke for almost an hour and it was genuinely wonderful although it did remind me how much I miss her.  To be friends with someone for over 12 years is somewhat impressive but the fact that we still get along as well as we did when we met is something I am truly proud of.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of the X Factor

I am having a lovely relaxing weekend.  I decided to take it easy and prepare myself for my first day oat a new university on Monday.  I have a million and one things to do and only a finite amount of time in which to get it done.

Here is a sample of my 'to do list' -

  • deep conditioning hair treatment
  • paint nails (and toes)
  • face mask
  • exfoliate and tan my, still horrifically pale, legs
  • make and use a sugar lip scrub
  • buy food for my pack lunches
  • get all the stationary I will need.
  • pack my bag
  • print out bus timetables
  • do laundry 
  • pick a first day outfit
  • have a nervous freak out
Even though I have a lot to do I am trying to enjoy my last weekend before all the hard work starts so I am watching the X factor in my pajamas and I am contemplating going to rummage in the freezer for some ice-cream.  

I have been really enjoying the X-Factor this year, although I much prefer the guest judges to Nicole Scherzinger.  My favourite moment so far was watching Gary Barlow literally running away from a particularly bad act.  You can see it here, I am sure that tonight's episode won't be quite as eventful but I am still hoping for some good entertainment.

Friday, 14 September 2012

Life is beautiful can make it that way

Part of doing this 'Life is beautiful' series is to remind  myself of the everyday things which make he happy that often go unnoticed or are forgotten about.  I worry that I sometimes take my happiness for granted.  I am a very lucky person.  I have wonderful friends, a truly supportive family and am about to train for a career that I love.

I have had tough times in my life and I have days where I don't feel particularly happy but thankfully they are in the minority.  I am known amongst my friends as being upbeat and optimistic and I feel it partly due to my decision to be so.

Obviously not everything is within my control but the things that I can control I do so that they make me happy.  I don't spend time with people I don't get on with, I speak to my family often, I have hobbies (such as this blog) which I enjoy and I try to give myself 'me' time where I can.

Today on youtube I noticed that the beautiful Tanya Burr of pixi2woo (one of my favourite youtubers)  uploaded a video with her own 10 Ways To Feel Happier.  I think it is important that when discussing makeup and beauty related products we remember that true beauty comes from within and that can come from being a happy person.

What things do you do to stay positive?

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of helping hands

I am starting a new university course in less than 4 day.  Eek!  As preparation I have been talking to people that have also taken the course in the past.  One of whom I didn't really know.  However she was so wonderful and helpful.  She sat with me for ages giving me loads of lovely hints and tips that I will definitely be using.

She really didn't need to be as friendly and helpful as she was but I cannot fully express how grateful I am that she took time out of her day to give me advice.  Today has been one of those days that reminds me how great people can be.

What has been making you happy today?

Wednesday, 12 September 2012


I have a confession to make.  I have broken my spending ban.  I have been really good recently and I think it all just got a bit much.  I have been desperate to get some little beauty goodies.  Its terrible that I was missing that excitement of finding something good and then waiting for a parcel to come through the post and make my day.

The only defense I have is that my fall off of the wagon was relatively minor.  I really want to subscribe to Joliebox but am holding myself back from making that commitment until I have finished my project pan.

So instead I went onto Latest in Beauty and order 3 samples for £1.50.  I think this is really reasonable and for a relatively small cost has fulfilled my need for a little beauty treat. The best bit is that I can choose what I am getting so that they will be things I will use.  The things I chose to order are L'Occitane Immortelle Divine Cream, Elemental Herbology Cell Food and a mystery sample.  I have never tried any of these before but I am excited to.  They all come in various different sample sizes but I will keep you updated on how I get on with them.

If you want to try it as well you can order your own little beauty box click here.

Update: It has arrived - See what it looks like here

Life is beautiful because...of crazy dancing

Have you ever heard the old saying ''Dance like no one is watching''. Well dancing when no one is around is one of my favourite things to do.  I love dancing in general and am always dragging my friends onto the dance floor.  Yet there is no greater pleasure than being in my room, dancing around whilst I am getting ready in the morning.

Today' dance track of choice was the wonderfully weird 'Bom Bom' by Sam and the Womp.  It is better than any coffee or tea for waking me and it gave me a really postive outlook on the day.

What is your favourite song to dance to?

What has been making you happy today?

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of books

I have spent a large chunk of today in a library.  I love libraries, one of my fabourite places on earth is the library within The British Museum.  It is beyond stuning.  It reminds me of the library in Beauty and the Beast.  I love everything about books.  The feel of the pages (I am not a fan of e-books), the sound they make when I turn them, the smell of old books and most importantly the hours of entertainment that they give me.

My love of books started from a very young age.  I would often hide myself away and escape to another world through the pages of a book.  A few of my favourite books from childhood are:

The Faraway Tree trilogy
Ella Enchanted
Each Peach Pear Plum
Guess how much I love you
Journey to the River Sea

I studied English Literature at university and in some ways it curbed my love of books by making it a chore rather than a joy.  However since graduating I have been reading a huge amount and it gives me such a lot of happiness and entertainment.

What do you love about books?

What has been making you happy today?

Monday, 10 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of the British weather

One of my close friends is originally from the Netherlands.  She told me once that when she first came to England she couldn't understand why we talk about the weather so much.  However after a few months she realized the reason that we talk about it so much is because it so changeable.  We never know where we are with it.  So we celebrate, we moan, we try and guess how long it will stay the same for and ultimately we (or at least I) love its little idiosyncratic ways.

Today has gone from miserable to sunny to terrible and back again.  I have spent time longing to be outside and I have been glad to be safe and sound indoors.  Do I say I want it to make up its mind?  Yes.  But do I actually want it to?  Well no, like a misbehaving child it is infuriating but at the end of the day it is our misbehaving child and we cannot help but love it.

What has been making you happy today?

Sunday, 9 September 2012

No7's Foundation Match Service Update

I recently used Boots' new No7 foundation match.  You can see my first thoughts on it here.  I used the Beautifully Matte foundation yesterday and I'm not entirely sold on it if I'm honest.  The foundation itself seemed fine.  It applied nicely, had good coverage and held up throughout the day.

My issue with it was the fact that I didn't feel that it matched my skin.  I felt rather ridiculous wearing it, though in the interest of writing a review I did leave the house and go about my day.  It was a bit too dark for my liking and it made it extremley obvious that I was wearing foundation.  Which was not the look I was going for.

I am disappointed that the entire selling point of finding my 'perfect match' is the one part of the foundation that I was let down by.  I will wear it again to see if I feel differently about it second time around and will also try out the other foundation sample that I was given to see if that suits me better.

So for now my recommendation is use the service and get samples before you buy full sizes of any of the foundations.

I will keep you posted.

Has anyone else had any experiences with this service?

See my second update here

Life is beautiful because...I've been making daisy chains

I have had been enjoying the late summer we seem to be having at the moment.  Today I sat in the garden listening to music and reading magazines.  Yet the thing that I enjoyed the most was making daisy chains.

I have been fairly remiss at cutting the grass recently so there were plenty of daisies to choose from.  Making daisy chains reminds me of picnics with my family, of studying for GCSE's and of wasting away free periods whilst at college.  There is something comforting about concentrating on making a daisy chain that makes me truly happy.  It lets me explore my hippy side and makes me think of fairies and secret gardens.  Taking something so natural and making it into something dainty but ultimately doomed seems somehow magical to me.  Or maybe I have just spent too long in the sun.

What has been making you happy today?

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of fantasy shopping

I am now quite a way into my spending ban and although I have slipped up a couple of time I am feeling fairly proud of myself.  However lately I have been feeling very tempted to just pick up 'a couple of bits'', but it would never be a 'couple of bits'.  It would escalate and then I would be suffering from buyers remorse whilst sat on a bed covered in things that I have no room for.

As such I have been trying to control my urges (ooh-er) by fantasy shopping.  As a child I would spend hours whenever the newest Argos catalogue came out flicking through it and deciding what I wanted to spend my pocket money on.  I would start by writing an embarrassingly comprehensive list (item, page number, price etc) and would then go through and cut the list down to what I really wanted.  This was a hobby of mine throughout childhood.  As I got older I would decide on household things I wanted for when I became an adult (still from the Argos catalogue).

I have now moved on from handwritten shopping lists and I am no longer limited to Argos.  The internet has opened up a whole world of fantasy shopping to me.  Today I have been dress shopping on Dorothy Perkins, jeans shopping on ASOS and makeup shopping on FeelUnique.  All without spending a penny.  Then again I haven't actually bought anything but i still got a strange enjoyment from browsing.  I guess it is the online version of window shopping.  You know you can't afford to buy the things but sometimes it is just nice to pretend that you can.

Where do you do your fantasy shopping?

What has been making you happy today?

Friday, 7 September 2012

Life is beautiful because of...that Friday feeling

I love that feeling when you realize that there are only a few hours of work separating you from the weekend.  Even though I am really enjoying what I am doing at the moment I still get that giddiness at the thought of days to myself.  I find it also brings the whole workforce together, everyone becomes that little bit more cheerful and energetic.  It is something which everyone is experiencing together, the joy of the impending weekend and the relief that another work week has passed without anything going terribly wrong.

Today as I was counting down the hours I could think of nothing more decadent than spending tomorrow having a lie in, experimenting with my new sun-in (could go badly wrong) and lying in the garden enjoying the sun that the weather men have promised us.  Indeed that is what I plan to do, I don't want to do anything 'exciting', I just want to enjoy relaxing and having a stress free day.

What do you do to relax?

What has been making you happy today?

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Life is beautiful because of... spaghetti

I have a confession.  I love pasta.  Lasagna, tortellini, spirals, bows, penne.  Once I even made my own ravioli from scratch (including the pasta - no mean feat without a pasta maker).  It tasted delicious but my sister did complain that there wasn't more of it, causing me to grump that my work was unappreciated.  Spinach and ricotta cannelloni is on of my favourite dishes of all time and my friends always know that if it is on the menu I won't go for anything else.

However there is a simple pleasure that can be found in a bowl of spaghetti bolognese.  I don't know what it is about it.  It might be the unladylike slurping of strands of spaghetti.  it may be that it reminds me of lady and the tramp, which is sure to make me smile.  I mean come on, they're dogs.  Sharing pasta.  Plus he lets her have the last meatball...even better than the last rolo me thinks.  It could be the fun I have twirling spaghetti on my fork.  It might even be the fact that it can be cooked so fast and yet tastes so good.  To be honest I don't know what it is but I know it fills my belly and makes me happy so its a winner in my eyes.

Does spaghetti have this effect on anyone else?

What has been making you happy today?

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of chatty strangers

Since I was a teenager I have noticed that I seem to attract strangers at bus stops.  I have had a guy tell me about the the fact that the day before the police had raided his house for drugs.  I was once told off by an old man that I hadn't learnt to drive yet (obvious from my reliance on the buses).  Another time an old lady bragged to me about her son who had written his masters in a foreign language.

Today I had another bus stop encounter.  An elderly lady waiting for the same bus as me was telling me all about the 'do' that her daughter was throwing for her 63rd birthday.  I quite like talking to people at bus stops, on trains and in queues it helps pass the time and I you sometimes meet really interesting people that you wouldn't meet under normal circumstances.  I do wonder though  if I am sending out some sort of signal that makes people talk to me.  Maybe I just have 'one of those faces'.  

Do you find yourself befriending strangers in odd places?

What has been making you happy today?

No7's Foundation Match Service

Today I took a little jaunt into town and thought I would try out the snazzy new foundation matching service from No7 in Boots.  You can see some information about it here and see the stunning Lisa Eldridge talking about it here.

If I'm honest I wasn't sure what to expect but I do find it ridiculously hard to pick a foundation in shops where the florescent light are making everything look strange.  Then you want to try it on your face to see if it actually matches but there are hardly any mirrors and there is the fear that you will be left wearing too dark foundation on one half of your face for the rest of the shopping trip.  All in all its my idea of a nightmare.  That's why I love Benefit so much, they do all the hard work for you.  It is quite common amongst high end brands that you can be given a consultation and they will pick a shade that will match you.  Yet this is the first time I have seen it on the high street.

So in I popped to Boots, when I got in  I was disappointed that there wasn't much advertising for the service itself.  Had I not have known already I wouldn't have realized it was available.  However when I asked the women at the counter they were friendly and helpful.  They had a few technical difficulties with the device but this was solved with the classic 'turn it off and then on again'.  I heard two clicks when it was held to one side of my face (on the jaw) and then two more on the other side.  The magical device then determined that I am the shade 'Soft Rose'.  Shallow I know but I really like the name of this shade, usually I am a shade named something rather unglamorous like 'Beige'.

I was then given the choice of taking home some samples to try.  I chose to have a sample of Stay Perfect and also Beautifully Matte.  I really like this aspect of it as now I can try them out whilst during normal everyday things.  I will try one tomorrow and see how its holds up through the day.  I have never really used No7 foundations before so I am hoping that I like them and that they make fill the liquid foundation void in my makeup bag.

Have any of you tried this service?

See my first update here

See my second update here

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of house parties

A friend of mine is celebrating his 23rd birthday today and as such he is having a house party.  I have not been to a 'true' house party outside of university for years.  When I think of house parties I think of being 15/16 and doing things which seemed outrageous and 'cool' but as an adult I can see that actually everything we did was normal teenage stuff.

We listened to music a bit louder than we should (but not too loud as to make the parents who were hiding upstairs to come down).  We dancing like no one was watching, I would love to bring back that lack of self-awareness is so gorgeously teenage.  We had first kisses, sometimes memorable for the wrong reasons.  People starting going out and people had horrendously public breakups.  We tried alcohol though there was never enough for people to be any more than tipsy.  Yet the thing I remember most was the fun I had with my friends, laughing and being generally silly.

I hope tonight is like that.

What is making you happy today?

This or That? TAG

This month's Tuesday Tag is 'This or That'.  I will be letting you know what I would choose if I could only have one of the two options given to me.  All of these questions are beauty orientated and split into categories; make up, nails, body and hair.

So here we go...

Make up

Blush or Bronzer: Blush, I don't often wear either but if I am going all out for a night out I almost always choose blusher over bronzer.

Lipgloss or Lipstick:  Lipstick - always.  I do own lipglosses but I almost never wear them.  On a daily basis I wear lip tint or a tinted lip balm or lip butter.

Eyeliner or Mascara:  Mascara.  I often leave the house with no makeup but if I do have a couple of spare seconds I use them to quickly pop on some mascara.  I love eyeliner but I could live without it.

Foundation or Concealer: Foundation but to be honest I could live without both of these.  i rarely wear foundation, preferring  tinted moisturizer   

Neutral or Coloured Eyeshadow: Neutral, though I do like an excuse to wear bright colours such as costume parties.

Pressed or Loose Eyeshadow: Pressed, I love the colours available from loose powders but cannot stand the mess they make.  I once had one of my younger cousins (who was 7 at the time)  spill an entire pot of loose eyeshadow on my bed.  Even a few washes later I could still see the sparkles.

Brushes or Sponges: Brushes.  i use my brushes almost everyday whereas I have never really got into using sponges.  I do own the beauty blender and want to start using it more as everyone seems to rave about it.


OPI or China Glaze:  China Glaze, I own far too many China Glaze polishes.  I just cannot resist the colours are incredible and the formula is my favourite.  I like OPI and do a quite a few of their polishes but I never like the formulation as much.

Long or Short: I have long nails.  I have stupidly small child-like hands and I feel as if when my nails are longer I look more like a 'grown up.  i don't like to have them too long though.'

Acrylic or Natural: Natural.  I try to look after my nails to that they will grow to the length that I like.  Other than a few bad experiences with stick on nails as a teenager I have never had nails other than my own.  It partly because I am a bit of a cheap skate and don't want to pay someone else to do my anils when I can do it at home and save the money to buy more polishes.

Brights or Darks: It depends on the season but mainly I wear greyed out pastels.  Not sure which category that falls into though.


Perfume or Body Spray: Perfume because of the staying power but I do love a body spray for everyday when you are in a mad dash to leave the house.

Lotion or Body Butter: Body butter, though I am far too lazy and often neglect to use either. 

Body Wash or Soap: Body wash because i like how much more bubbly it is and I feel as if the scents are stronger.


Curly or Straight:  Curly.  I have naturally wavy hair so I usually leave it how it dries but for special, occasions I will sometimes opt for a change and straighten it.

Bun or Ponytail: Ponytail.  I usually wear my hair in a ponytail but if it needs a wash I will hide it with a bun.

Bobby Pins or Butterfly Clips: Bobby pins. I use these all the time and am always having to buy new ones as they seem to be rather mutinous and are forever falling out of my hair.

Hairspray or Gel: Hairspray, though I rarely use this as I hate the smell so much.

Long or Short:  Short, I like having my hair shorter as then it is easier to manage.  At the moment it is a bit past  my shoulders and needs a bit of a trim.  I always had very long hair as a child and I do miss it sometimes but it was just so much extra work.

Light or Dark: Dark.  I have naturally very dark brown hair but it is currently ombred so I guess it is both light and dark.  I do want to go fully blonde at some point but haven't worked up the courage (or the funds) quite yet.

Full Fringe or Side Fringe:  Side fringe.  I haven't had a full fringe since I was about 9 and dread to think what I would look like with one. I do think I might try it again at some point though.

Up or Down:  Up.  My hair is fairly hard to manage so unless it has miraculously dried in a way I like I will bung it up and keep my fingers crossed for the next time.

What would your answers be?

Are there any TAGs you would recommend?

Monday, 3 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of waking up naturally

Today I totally forgot to set my alarm but miraculously I still woke up at the same time.  The thing that surprised me though is how much more awake I felt.  I went to sleep at the same time and everything else was just like normal yet my energy levels today are much higher than they have been for a while.

I love waking up because I am no longer tired or because the sun is shining through the curtains that little bit too much.  It  is so much nicer than the dream shattering that accompanies alarms going off.  I wish I could trust my body to always wake me up on time but I don't think I can afford to take that risk.  So instead I will just enjoy today's treat and try not to focus on the alarm that will be getting me up tomorrow.

What has been making you happy today?

Sunday, 2 September 2012

Life is beautiful because...of a new addition to the family

My cousin and his wife recently had their first baby and I have been caught up in baby fever.  Today I saw photos of him for the first time and I have to say he is the cutest thing I have seen in a while.  I am looking forward to having a baby in the family again, it is the start of a new generation.

There is something about babies that make me unnaturally happy.  the advert with all the laughing babies can cheer me up faster than ice-cream or chocolate.  I think it is the potential that babies embody.  They have their whole lives ahead of them with so many options open to them.  I think I sometimes put myself in a box and babies make me realize that I still have the whole world open to me.

What has been making you happy today?

Saturday, 1 September 2012

Life is beautiful's Autumn

There are things that I love about each season but Autumn has a special place in my heart.  It reminds me of back to school excitement, playing conkers and jumping in pile of leaves.  I also love all of the 'traditional' autumn colours.  Expect to see several 'Autumn' inspired makeup and nail varnish posts.

I am sorry to see Summer go but to be honest I didn't feel as if England had a proper summer this year and I stubbornly refused to get the scarfs out before the seasons changed.  Now though I get to wrap up in layers guilt free.  Now its the start of Autumn I feel as if I can start to dress in a slightly darker and grungier way.  There is nothing I love more than jeans and oversized jumpers.

What is making you happy today?