14 WEEKS OF MELODIES #5

bloghopbutton_zps0d768d38Daughter – “Youth”

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Time flies. Seriously. The past week has gone by in the blink of an eye. But. There just may have been a ‘tune or two I’ve had playing throughout the week. First off, honorable mention to the band Arcade Fire in general; they’ve been churning out song after song of pure music. Love. But the real pick this week happens to be an old favorite of mine; “Youth” by Daughter. Let’s talk about this for a sec. You know when you find this incredible song and no one you know has ever heard it before and then you show a few people and they’re like hey, “that’s good stuff.” And then all of a sudden a year later some celebrity tweets about it and now everyone loves it like nobody’s business? That’s what happened here. I “discovered” this little gem years ago and fell in love; the other day some guy off Pretty Little Liars (which I love, don’t get me wrong) instagrams a photo and everyone’s like oh that’s incredible. Excuse me. I found it first. Not really, but kind of. So yeah, I’m feeling a little robbed and torn up inside about this one, but I’m still as in love with this song as ever. If you haven’t heard of Daughter before, she (the lead singer of the band) is an incredible artist, and her other pieces don’t get nearly as much credit as this one. Like the track? Check out “Landfill” and her cover of “Peter“. If anyone finds the latter on itunes, please let me know! I’ve been searching for at least a year now and I’ve only ever found it on youtube. So there you have it! Week number five, done. Simples.

Want to join the hop? Have a look here.

14 WEEKS OF MELODIES #4

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Wasting My Young Years

Another quickie post today. If you’ve been on youtube any time soon, you’ve probably seen Tanya Burr’s last “Monthly Favorites” video. If you haven’t, get to it. At the end of the video, Tanya usually has a song pick of the month, and this month, her favorite was beyond perfect. Again, if you’re into the indie-ish music scene, you’ll have heard of a little band called London Grammar based out of the city, so you’ll know how incredible the music is. Anywho, this week, Wasting My Young Years has been on constant replay on my phone. Both Tanya Burr and I have the same favorite song. A sign from the universe, perhaps? I think yes.

Interested in joining the hop? Have a look at Beauties Unlocked and post your song pick for the rest of the ten weeks!

 

OCTOBER BIRCHBOX UNBOXING

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DSC_0188The second Friday of every month is probably my favorite day of the month, purely because checking my mailbox reveals a little pink box of beauty for me to squeal about. Oh yes, I love me some Birchbox. I know that a lot of people prefer Glossybox to Birchbox, but I can’t compare the two, as I’ve only ever tried the latter, but this month’s box is definitely something to phone home about. So what’s inside? Have a look.

Liz Earle Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser

While the name’s a bit of a mouthful, I’ve been trying this stuff for about a week now and it’s seriously good. I’d actually been trying to get my hands on a bottle, but it was nearly impossible to get it anywhere in the U.S. I was ready to order off the Liz Earle website and pay an extra third of the price for shipping when I heard Birchbox was launching it in the States. Hallelujah. Gorgeous scent and amazing product that leaves skin clean without feeling stripped. Love.

Liz Earle Muslin Cloth

Included in the little Tiffany-blue Liz Earle box was one of the brand’s muslin cloths, which actually counted as a separate product for this month’s box. While it is cute, the flannel is just okay. To be honest, I much prefer my own set of cloths from Wal-Mart that cost me $4 purely because I feel like they exfoliate much better than these, being a bit more scrubby, yet still thin. I’d say don’t break the bank and buy these at $6 for 2 cloths when you can go out and get a set of 18 better flannels for $4, but no qualms here about it being included in this month’s box.

Dermablend Smooth Indulgence Mineral Finishing Powder

I received the shade “Amber”, the darker of the two. Personally, the color is a bit dark for me, but then again the only other shade suits light skin tones, so I’m not sure that would be any better. This will probably suit me better in the summer when I have more of a tan, but for now, it works fine as a bronzer. This sample is actually a full size product, retailing for $25. The product alone is worth $15 more than the price of the box, so I was happy to see this month’s box having a great value.

theBalm “Stainiac” Cheek and Lip Stain

The shade Birchbox sent me was “Beauty Queen”, a gorgeous berry. I freaking love gel cheek/lip tints. Easy to apply, this gives just enough time for blending out on the skin before setting and staying put for hours. It’s also lightweight on the lips and seriously does not budge.

Birchbox Find: ChapStick Hydration Lock

I heard from the BB sneak peak video that this one is supposedly a great lip primer before using any sort of lipstick or gloss, and I actually really like this product. I’m a bit of a balm snob, if that’s a thing, and I typically stick to the same products, so I haven’t used ChapStick since  was seven. I liked how this wasn’t included in the 4-5 samples we received, and it’s versatile and really quite useful.

Overall, this has to have been my favorite Birchbox so far. I’ve actually just hit 400 Birchbox points to spend in the online shop, so check back soon to see what I’ve picked up! What subscription beauty boxes do you love?

Want to order a box? Here’s the link to the subscription: Birchbox Subscription 

 

14 WEEKS OF MELODIES #3

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I cannot believe it’s been a week. The past seven days have just been a blur, but I have had time to listen to a few ‘tunes. This week’s “Melodies” post is a quickie, since I have a Birchbox post coming up tomorrow and a guest blog post on another website to pop up sometime soon. If you’re into the Indie music scene, you’ll definitely have heard of the band Haim recently, as they’ve been absolutely taking over the indie airwaves, even being featured in the last issue of Entertainment Weekly. It’s a trio of three California sisters, and the song pick this week is their biggest hit so far, The Wire. Have a listen here. The week has been beyond amazing, and this song is just terrifically upbeat without ever getting annoying. Anyone remember the Meredith Grey-Cristina Yang 30 second dance parties from Grey’s Anatomy? Well, this is my 30-second jam. To be honest, I’ve had it on replay ALL week, so I might have been jammin’ every minute. I’m not really sure. But I digress.

Interested in this hop? Have a look on the hosts’ blogs:

Beauties Unlocked

Katie’s World

A One Way Ticket to My world

THE LUST LIST #1.

As a professional wishlist maker, I’ve had one of these “Things To Buy” checklists running since before I turned seven. True, it has evolved ever so slightly in the past decade or so, but the habit remains. It’s probably not the best thing for my bank account, but I digress. Onto the products.

Screen shot 2013-10-06 at 12.20.09 PMFirst up, the Nude Perfect Cleansing Oil, retailing at $36 a pop. Yes, it’s pricey, but after obtaining a sample from my local Sephora a few weeks ago, I have to say, it’s well worth the price tag. This stuff smells incredible, melts makeup right off, and leaves skin silky-soft. Again on the cleansing front, Liz Earle’s Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser. Quite the mouthful. Birchbox has just introduced this one to the states, making it readily available via their website (if you don’t know what Birchbox is, check back soon for an unboxing and intro to the subscription box!). The last skincare-ish lustworthy item on the docket is the Nuxe Rêve de Miel lip balm. A favorite in the British blogosphere, I’ve been wanting to pick this baby up for ever. Next up, the Laura Mercier Mineral Powder. I first heard about this product from Estée, or essiebutton‘s videos. I’ve been looking for the perfect powder to wear with just a bit of concealer for no makeup-makeup days, and this one seems to tick all the boxes. Whilst in Sephora the other day, I finally got the chance to test out Josie Maran’s watercolour cheek gelées, gorgeous little pots of gel blusher that glide on the skin like butter. After hearing all the hype on blogs, this one is definitely wantworthy. And now, succhisimples’ most wanted, public favorite number one, the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powder Palette. I’d been lusting after the shade “Dim Light” for quite some time, but after seeing this pop up on Makeup And Beauty Blog, I fell in love. No joke. For $58, you get three ambient lighting powders worth $45 a piece, including the limited-edition shade “Incandescent Light” and the warming “Radiant Light”, and a 0.16 oz. sample of the Mineral Veil Primer, which I’ve been dying to try, worth $18 alone. Great bang for your buck. Godwilling, she will be mine. Of course we’ve all heard of Diptyque from our über-chic british blogging friends, but the brand is, to say the least, elusive with regards to its presence in the American market, having only one store in the States located in New York City. The “Eau Duelle” Eau de Parfum is described as a “sensuous bourbon vanilla paired with a pod infusion for a rich fragrance with depth. It’s underlined by the amber animality of cistus and the warmth of ambroxan.”I adore warm vanilla scents, and I think that this one will be perfect for winter. I’ve heard great things about the YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils Shocking mascara; I’ve actually never tried a super high-end mascara before, so I thought this would be a great place to start. Last but not least, we have the Nars Pure Radiant Creamy Concealer. It could be that I’ve simply been unimpressed with nearly all the drugstore concealer offerings I’ve tried, or that I’m just a snob when it comes to base products; either way, I want this. I’ve been in need of a good concealer for blemishes for a while now, and while this isn’t cheap, I’d really like to try it and see what all the hype is about.

So that’s it! My current most lusted-after items. I’m going to try to post one of these every month, so stay tuned. I’m also challenging myself to put up a post every day this month, so check back for more! What products are you lusting after this month?

ANOTHER WEEK, ANOTHER MELODY

bloghopbutton_zps0d768d38And here we have it! 14 weeks of melodies, number two. The week has been far better than the last ( I might even venture so far as to say it’s been the best in a very, very long time.), but I did spend most of it sick at home with Vick’s vapo-rub slathered on and a roll of tissues out nonstop, so I’ve been listening to a fair few ‘tunes to keep me going.If you haven’t heard of Soley, she’s an Icelandic artist and a member of the band Seabear. She has a gorgeous voice, and this song… There are no words. It’s absolutely incredible. It’s called “Pretty Face”; the entire album is hauntingly beautiful. Have a listen: http://youtu.be/go9qo66Kh4M…and that’s my pick of the week. I’m a little late on this one, seeing as it’s meant to be on Tuesdays. Want to join in on the hop? Have a look at Beauties Unlocked and link up your accounts for a chance to win some prizes!

THE 3 PRODUCT FACE.

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Oh, how I do love a good cheek stain. I love how easy they are to apply, and how naturally rosy they appear on the cheek. I’ve been going through a pretty rough string of mornings lately in which I barely get five minutes to sit down and do my makeup, so we’ve kept things to the bare minimum. By that, I mean 3 (yes, that’s right, three) products. No base, no concealer, no powder, nada. Just flushed cheeks, glowy cheekbones, and lashings of some good ol’ Colossal mascara. Excuse the messy tube, I’ve had this one lying around for far too long; needless to say it’s past its prime appearance-wise, but still functional. Unfortunately, the gel tint for them chubby cheeks isn’t readily available in the U.S., since it’s from a Filipino brand from when I visited over the summer, but if you can find it in an Asian beauty store or if you’re ever in Asia, I highly suggest picking this up! A little bit goes a LONG way, and the pigmentation and lasting power are both great. It’s also really easy to blend, so no need to stress about it drying down too fast. Anywho. Enough about the product you can’t get (sorry about that). Lastly, shimmering cheekbones are courtesy of Bobbi Brown’s shimmer brick in Bronze, a Christmas gift from my mum last year. This thing is seriously gorgeous; it’s a warmed-up copper/champagne shade that looks gorgeous against a tan. It packs a pretty penny, but I’d definitely recommend this finely milled little parcel of sun. So there it is! Au natural, easy breezy, maybe even a little bit cheesy. Simples.

THE NEW THING VOL. 4: MAC ECLAIR PAINT POT

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I’ve always had a thing for cream eyeshadows. One quick swipe, buffed out lightly with a finger, and you’re good to go. Smudgey perfection in five seconds. They tend to give a more natural, effortless look that just seems to say, I woke up looking this good. Out of all the shades to choose from, I think bronze is the faultless and perfect way to go. Of course, we’ve all heard of Maybelline’s Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze, a slightly cool-toned, metallic hue that lasts and lasts and lasts, no primer necessary. I’ve even worn this to the beach and out for the rest of the day in the middle of hot Florida July and still come home with my shadow lookin’ prety damn good. However, being that my skin is very warm-toned, I’ve always thought that it can look a little strange on me, having almost a silver-y sheen. Enter a little rust-colored pot of goodness.

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MAC’s paint pots are some of the bet crème shadows on the entire planet, if not the best. They have an incredibly silky texture that glides on the skin but gives you just enough time to blend before setting completely and staying put all day long. I have a few of these in my collection, namely Vintage Selection, a glittering champagne-pink, and Soft Ochre, a nice matte yellow-toned base, but this one beats them all out of the water. Eclair is a warm-toned, rusty brown shade that is just an absolute joy to apply; it’s practically butter in a pot. Smudged out and blended all the way under the lower lashline and just past the crease? This is Mary-Kate and Ashley rock-chic perfection. I managed to grab one of these before they went out, since they were part of the MAC Baking Beauties collection, so unfortunately, they’re not sold anymore, but if you can find one at a CCO store, grab it. I’m thinking about doing a massive giveaway and including this product once I reach 150 followers, so help me get there for a chance to win this bad boy.

HELLO, OCTOBER.

DSC_0177Everyone say Hi.

I’ve recently come to the realization that this month has to be my favorite of the entire year, topping even my birthday month (it’s March, by the way, in case you wanted to send me some fantastic present). Think about it. Yes, Autumn officially starts in September. But let’s be honest, the whole month, we’re all still in shock that summer’s over, and can’t seem to grasp the idea that it might be time to start breaking out the scarves and boots. We’ve just spent three entire months fawning over salt sprays and Victoria’s Secret-worthy tans, lusting after coral blushers and neon nails. But then September hits, and the fact that maybe it’s time to put the beach umbrellas away and give the summer a hearty farewell starts to set in, and on the inside, we’re all suffering from a little PTSD from watching it go. What is it Lana calls it? Summertime Sadness?

Well, it happened. And now it’s gone.

So October comes in, guns blazing, and all of a sudden we’ve accepted that summer’s time is up and we start humming Christmas carols under out breath. Well. Not everyone does that. It could be just me, but who really knows? The point is that when the month begins, we start getting into this weird, bewitching autumnal holidays-are-a-coming feeling that’s pretty incredible, if you ask me. And we start to feel a little bit of hope fill the void July left behind as it rode off into the sunset. So yeah, I guess you could say I’m a little bit in love with this October guy.

Onto a new product. *Cue drumline* … It’s a candle! I haven’t really blogged about them at all, but I’ve gotten really into these kids lately, and this one from Bath and Body Works is just. There are no words. It’s called Fresh Balsam, and it has this incredibly rich pine scent to it, like you’ve just  walked past a Christmas wreath and gotten a  whiff of its merry goodness. It’s quite warm and comforting, and great for getting into that fall spirit. If you haven’t, and you need a candle to do it for you, then that’s not a good sign. But if you do, give this one a go.

Coincidentally, one of my absolute favorite blogs is named Hello October (see what I did there?). To be honest, I might have possibly perhaps named this post after it because I’m that in love with it, but you know. If you haven’t seen it yet, go look NOW. It’s run by the impossibly beautiful Suzie, and the entire blog is just gorgeous. I love the quirky-ish SoHo chic layout, and she does such a great job writing really honest reviews and making fun videos. Have a look here.

Hope you’re enjoying your October!

 

 

 

 

 

MID-WEEK HOPPIN’.

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Happy Wednesday everyone!

Ha. Happy Wednesday. I’d rather not lie, so by “Happy Wednesday”, I mean to say that I hope you’re all having a fantastic wednesday to make up for my awful day, not that I myself am experiencing such things. Suffice it to say that I’ve had a really tough week, with today thus far proving to be the worst day I’ve had in a while. BUT. The lovely Lisa and Carrieanne of Beauties Unlocked, along with the equally lovely Katie of Katie’s World  and Daniela of A  One Way Ticket to My World have launched a new blog hop that just might lift some of your mid-week blues. The hop is called “14 Weeks of Melodies”, and the idea is that every week you pick a song that represents your mood lately, and share it on the Hop. Each week, there’s a prize up for grabs, and the hop is going on all the way up until December 31st, with a grand prize being awarded to the blogger who completes all 14 weeks! I think it’s a great idea, as lately I’ve been somewhat negligent of posting to my blog, so hopefully this’ll help get me into a routine to try to complete the challenge, and I love music and finding new and exciting songs and artists I might not have heard of before! Interested? Head over to the hosts’ blogs (linked below) and link up your accounts after sharing your weekly melody, and grab the button off of Beauties Unlocked to share with your own followers!

One of my long-time favorite bands/artists/whatevers has always been a duo called Tegan and Sara. If you haven’t heard of them before, they’re a pair of identical twins who have some AMAZING records. Stop. Don’t even finish reading this post if you’ve never heard them before, and go see my buddy google.com and have a listen. If you’re into indie/alternative music, this is absolute love. I’ve had a rough go of things lately, and I’ve basically had the song “Where Does the Good Go?” on replay every single moment of the day. It’s absolutely beautiful, and deep; I especially love the first verse. I find it really comforting, because it has to do with figuring out how to deal with yourself and life after going through a rough patch, but it’s not patronizing in any way so as to lie and tell you that everything’s all right. It’s wonderful and introspective and its a slice of reality. True and honest. So go ahead, have a listen.

SO. Apologies for my ramblings, but sometimes you need to let it all out to start taking the good back in. Have a look at the host blogs; I love them all!

Beauties Unlocked 

Katie’s World

A One Way Ticket to My World