Monday, 23 September 2013



Sometimes I feel lost, like I have no clear direction of where I’m going in life, no set path to follow. There’s so much out there; so many people to meet and ways of life to experience. If I could, I would pack my life into a bag right now and get on the next plane out of England. I wouldn’t worry about where it’s going - that would be the fun of it. Don’t get me wrong, I love England, it’s my home and it’s full of wonderful people, but it’s only a tiny piece of the jigsaw that makes up the world.
I want to feel the warmth of the African sun, to eat Italian cuisine in Italy, to see the elephants in Thailand, and the skyline of New York. I want to see how other people live their lives and experience what life has to offer. When I read people’s stories and blogs of their travelling adventures, I get goose bumps. It takes my breath away it really does. I think ‘I want to be doing that’.
I know that at the moment, it’s an unrealistic dream to have – I’m 17, I work full time in a 9-5 office job that I hate, and my bank account isn’t exactly overflowing. But give me a few years and I’ll make it happen, I’m making a promise to myself that one day I’ll get on a plane and I will go somewhere I’ve never been before, and I’ll take hundreds of photographs and meet people from all over the world. I can’t wait.

Have you ever been travelling? Where in the world have you been, or where would you love to go?
laura xo

Friday, 20 September 2013

REVIEW: benefit total moisture facial cream

Now that the colder weather is starting to show it's face again, I need a moisturizer that I can rely on to keep my oh so problematic skin feeling fresh and keep the dryness at bay.

I have tried countless moisturizers over the years and I just couldn't seem to find one that I felt really did what it said on the tin. So when I came across this one, and read some good reviews, I thought I'd give it a try.

I was completely won over by the cute packaging of Benefit's Total Moisture Facial Cream. Its held in a glass jar with a plastic 'cork' lid. It's quite heavy but it looks and feels expensive and of good quality, so my hopes were high before I'd even opened it up. It's a nice size, and although there isn't a lot of it, a little goes a long way so it lasts a long time.

The facial cream itself is thick and quite greasy, but it sinks into the skin fairly quickly. I usually leave it around 10-15 minutes if I'm applying it before doing my makeup, but I mostly use it before bed. It smells lovely too which is a bonus :-)

After trying product after product, I was so pleased when I gave this one a go and found that it worked! It sorted out my dry skin within a couple of days and I was super happy. However, I do find that it makes me break out if I use it too often, probably due to the greasiness of the product - or perhaps the fragrance - so it's really one of my go to products when my skin is particularly dry, rather than something I use every day.

I would definitely recommend this if you suffer with dry skin on your face - although if you've got oily skin it might not be such a great option. Obviously everyone will react to it differently, and perhaps it's just my skin reacting to the product causing me to break out, but I certainly don't regret purchasing this because I know I can rely on it if my skin decides to play up. For £27.50, it is quite pricey, but with colder weather creeping up on us and threatening dry skin, I would say it's worth it.

What's your go-to product to protect your skin from the cold weather? Have you tried Benefit Total Moisture?

laura xo

Friday, 6 September 2013

glad to be back

Just a very quick post to say 'I'm back' from my very long break (which I didn't choose to have, by the way!). I moved house back in May/June time and it's taken us THIS LONG to get back online! Just ten minutes ago we were finally connected to the internet and although it's actually been quite refreshing to be slightly cut off from reality for a while (we had no home phone and rubbish mobile signal as well!), I can't say I haven't been looking forward to catching up on everything I've been missing in the beauty blogging world :-)

I've got some ideas floating around in my head that I'll definitely be working on and posting soon, so do keep coming back for a peek now and again! And if there's anything you would love to see on my blog, leave me a comment, I'd love to hear your ideas :)

laura xo

Sunday, 31 March 2013

NOTD - Barry M Lychee

Hello ladies! Now that Spring is here (or is trying to be here, anyway), I really want to get out of the dark nail polish days and brighten up my nails a little bit. I don't feel ready to dip my foot in the pastel pool quite yet, but I'm sure it will only be a few weeks until I do. That's why I love Barry M's Lychee so much - it's not dark and wintery but it kind of says 'on the verge of Spring'. I picked this colour up a few weeks back whilst I was in Boots, as I already had a few colours from the Barry M Gelly Hi-Shine Range, and I wanted to purchase a few more. I was instantly drawn to Lychee, it's a beautiful nude shade but what I love about it is that it's undertones are neither too yellow nor too pink, which I often find is a problem with nude shades.

I love this range of nail polish as it's so shiny and glossy, so much so that there's no real need for a top coat! I used two coats of this for complete opacity, but you could definitely get away with only one coat. The only critisism I have is that I find the brush is quite small (as it is with all Barry M nail polish's, as far as I know anyway) and therefore application can sometimes be tricky, but I can get over that :-) Overall, I would say thumbs up to Barry M!

I added an accent nail with some gold glitter nail polish, I'm not sure which brand I used as it's one of my sisters (oops, what she doesn't know can't hurt her). But there are a lot of glitter nail polishes out there that will do the job just as well, such as this one here.

What's your favourite nail colour at the moment? Is there any brands you've been loving?

laura xo

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

New Look Haul

I love a good haul post. I think they're great for nosey people like me who like to see what other people buy and spend their money on. So, I thought I would provide you lovely people with a bit of a haul of things I have purchased over the last couple of weeks. They are mostly items bought with my new job in mind, as I need to start building up my work wardrobe!

This is a pinky/coral coloured blouse that I picked up a few weeks back. I think it was £12.99. I think that although it's a fairly bright colour and could be used on a night out or as a casual blouse, it would also fit in well in my work wardrobe. It's a dipped hem style and has buttons all the way up leading to a cute little collar. I love this style, it's so pretty - and a perfect spring colour and style so I couldn't resist picking it up :-)

I absolutely love this top - monochrome is really in right now and is a big hit for spring so when I saw this beauty on the rails I grabbed it before I could convince myself otherwise. I tried it on before I bought it (which I am guilty of not doing very often) and the top is slightly shorter at the front, but not to the point that I would call it 'cropped', so I think this will also fit in nicely in my work wardrobe. I like that the stripes on the pocket are horizontal but on the rest of the top they are vertical, and I also love the buttons that go all the
way up the back and think this adds a nice edge to it. I really can't remember how much this was and it's bugging me but when I find out I will update.

Next is this black peplum top which I absolutely love, and is something that I tried on and actually thought looked really nice which is rare for me. It's got a round neck and I can't find the right words to describe the material but it's sort of textured which adds a little bit more to it. I think this top will look so good with a big statement necklace. It was only £12.99 and can be worn in so many different ways so a pretty good bargain really!

This vest top is more casual but I tried it on tucked into some black fitted trousers (that you can find down below) and it looked really nice and quite office-chic ;-). It has a racer back and although it's quite low cut, the way it hangs isn't too revealing. It's longer on each side of the top and the hem sort of rises up in the centre. (I'm not sure what this style is called - if any of you do then please let me know!). I really love this top and it will double as a nice spring/summer number and it was £4.99 :-) yay to bargains.

These trousers are something like what I would of worn when I was at school, but minus the rest of the school uniform, they are really lovely and look good paired with a nice top and blazer. They are fitted and actually almost too tight at the bottom around my calfs! But I'm sure they'll be fine once they've been worn and washed a few times. The two gold zips on either side look so pretty and make the trousers a little bit more 'edgy' if you know what I mean. They were £12.99, but the price was written onto the tag with a pen so I'm guessing that was a reduced price - I don't know what they were originally. I have no idea why they were reduced though as there is nothing wrong with them!

Lastly, I picked up this black dress because I like the simplicity of it. It's a kind of, dress length vest top, with a low cut back. It hangs really nicely and is quite fitted, so I might do a few toning exercises before I wear it, but it was £7.99 and I couldn't say no, so it now is hanging proudly in my wardrobe :-)

So that was some of the items I have purchased over the last couple of weeks. I will probably buy some more things in the next few weeks as I still need some more clothes for when I start my new job, so I might do a haul on those things if you guys want me to. And I would just like to add a little note..

Through the wonderful world of Twitter, I discovered a lovely little shop called Dixi which you can find here. I had a look through and chose to purchase this pretty little necklace, which also had the option of turquoise colour although I opted for pink. I also bought some high waisted wet look leggings which I love. I haven't photographed these for this blog post as I've left them at my mums, but I might feature them in my next haul. Dixi is a beautiful little shop and sells a huge range of clothing and jewellery, both modern and vintage, at some great prices. Definitely check it out if you haven't already!

Now I'm going to love you and leave you... sorry for babbling on, once I've started I can't seem to stop! What do you think of my purchases? Is there anything you've bought recently that you love?

laura xo

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Glossybox or Birchbox?

There's been a lot of hype around the whole 'beauty box' idea, particularly the famous Glossybox, and it's close competitor Birchbox. I love the idea of it and think it's a brilliant way to find new brands and products that you might not of come across otherwise. Now, I am one of the worlds worst decision makers. I got as far as deciding that, yes, I do definitely want to invest in a beauty box subscription. But after that, I found myself a little bit stuck and confused, so please grab a cup of tea/coffee/vodka or whatever takes your fancy and prepare for a rambly post...

Which box do I go for?

So, I read up on both boxes and looked at the pros and cons of each. The prices of each box appear to be fairly similar, Glossybox being £10 for a monthly subscription, £27 for a three month subscription (saving £3), £50 for a 6 month subscription (saving £10), and £100 for a yearly subscription (saving £20). The prices of Birchbox almost follow suit - £10 monthly and £100 for a year's subscription, however the three month deal cashes in at £30 which may appear to save you less money than a Glossybox might. However, looking into it more made it clear to me that with Birchbox subscriptions, you earn more points, which are then redeemable for discounts in the online shop. All very confusing you might think, but essentially, neither box offers a 'better' deal, just different ones. It comes down to personal choice - if you're not going to be spending money in Birchbox's online shop, then you probably don't want discounts for it. 

So, after deciding that the money saving aspect of each box wasn't all that different, I had a look into the actual value for money that each box can offer. Brands. Glossybox provides travel sized products from the likes of Caudalie, Clarins, Elizabeth Arden and Illamsqua, as well as a fairly large selection of other high end beauty brands. Birchbox, whilst partnered with just as many different brands, including China Glaze, L'occitane, and Laura Geller, perhaps provides users with more products that are less well known or less raved about. But does this necessarily mean that these products are inferior?

Both boxes tailor the products to your personal online profile, so that in your monthly box you will receive products that are suited to you (you wouldn't want to receive something that helps sort out oily skin if your skin was as dry as a bone would you?). Perhaps one advantage that Birchbox has over Glossybox is that with each box it sends out a Birchbox magazine, as well as original tips and tricks to help the user with the products that box contains. I think this is a nice touch and I for one would find this very helpful, but does it give Birchbox the winning hand? I'm still undecided, and think that the answer for me may be to try out both boxes and decide from there - so watch this space!

Are you subscribed to any beauty boxes? Which do you prefer - Glossybox or Birchbox?

Sunday, 17 March 2013

What's In My Bag? - My 'Emergency' Kit

When I'm out and about, I like to think that I am prepared for anything. Ok, maybe not anything, but I do like to be ready for those beauty-related problems that life likes to throw at me at the most inconvenient times - like a stray eyebrow hair, or a blemish that's outstaying it's welcome. This is where my little 'emergency kit', as I like to call it, often comes in handy.

I carry it round in a pretty little Cath Kidston purse that's just big enough to hold all the things I need. I have a compact mirror with a gorgeous floral pattern on it, and the mirror being so small comes in very handy for quick make up checks or touch up's. I carry a packet of Me To You tissues, because, well they're just so cute and I like them. I've got my trusty tweezers, some bobby pins for those annoying fly away bits of hair, and some Nivea raspberry Lip Butter, which smells absolutely delicious and works wonders on my lips. Lastly, I always carry around my favourite concealer of the moment - Collection 2000 Lasting Perfection, which I've heard endless raves about in the beauty blogging world and have to agree, it's wonderful. And one of my favourite products, Soap and Glory Hand Food, which is like a little treat for my poor hands in this cold weather. So there you have it - my 'emergency' kit (none of this would be very helpful in a real emergency, obviously). 

What do you carry around with you on a day to day basis? Do you always take a full bag of make up, or do you have a little collection of things like I do?

laura xo