Friday, 31 May 2013

First week in England!

So, we've now been in England a whole week! It really seems like longer because we've already done so much.
The squirrels are so friendly!
We spent the first 3 nights in London, and got to our first hotel around 6pm (the one we booked less than a week before we left because we got the date we landed wrong...) When we were waiting in Paddington Station to figure out how to get to our hotel, it was pissing down with rain, but luckily it stopped enough for us to get into our hotel, and then it cleared up and we ended up going for a walk into Hyde Park, which was super pretty. We even saw a squirrel!

The next day was a venture to Oxford street, to find sim cards with the best internet deals, and to have a look at the shops. I pretty much went straight to Superdrug... so fun to see all the new brands of makeup (Sleek! MUA! Barry M!). We also checked out Topshop (which has A CUPCAKE SHOP IN IT!), Urban Outfitters and Primark (which was super packed and not a great place to be in unfortunately. Don't go in there when it's a long weekend) We ended up walking into Hyde park, after spending a really long time trying to find a public toilet (you wouldn't think it would be that hard in a city) and then back to Sainsbury's to get lunch, and up to Regents Park to eat it. 
Eating lunch in Regents Park
white swans are so pretty!
The next day we trecked at total of about 13km! (I checked on google maps) Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey, Big Ben, and then all the way along to St Pauls Cathedral past the Savoy and Twinings shop. Then took a train to the Natural History Museum to see the blue whale (again, long weekend, super busy), then back through Hyde Park to go back to the hotel. So much walking! The next day we visited Harrods, and I bought Mac Viva Glam Nicki 2 (which is pretty fantastic). We also got some chilli squid and custard donuts and ate them in, guess where? Hyde Park of course! 
We sat here to eat lunch!

We took the train to Toby's family friends who live in a little town about a half hour train ride from London which is super duper pretty! We've been out to Luton and Hemel Hamstead since we got here and done a lot of walking along the canal to the supermarket (I got a little excited to visit all the supermarkets here. I'm weird). It's rained a lot, but of course today, the day we decide to spend inside doing boring things like applying for national insurance numbers, fixing up resumes and looking for jobs, it's super sunny!

Monday week we're off to Liverpool for a few days which is going to be real cool because we want to see lots of Beatles stuff, then when we get back from there we're off to Edinburgh! We're also thinking about doing a trip to Paris the week after that (FOR MY BIRTHDAY!!!) before we properly look for work.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Hey there, Malaysia!

Hello all! Now that I'm actually traveling, I really have no idea what to write about for a blog post! And I'm sorry all these photos are instagram photos, I'm always worried in Asia that I'm going to take pictures of the wrong things and get in trouble, so I don't want to take my SLR around with me. I blame the Australian government's travel adds for that!

We arrived in Kuala Lumpur last night at around 9pm, and after taking the KLIA Ekspress, and then a taxi, we didn't get to our hotel until 11pm (1am aest). Surprisingly I wasn't that tired, and I didn't even get much sleep on the plane.
View from our hotel room.

We ended up waking up at 7.30, had a rather average breakfast at the hotel, went for a walk only to realise that shops don't open till 10am here! We went to Times Square and spent a couple of hours there walking around the shops and had lunch. There's a theme park in there that looked really awesome (I mean, roller coaster in a shopping mall, how could that not be cool?!) but was a little too expensive (although in hindsight we probably could have splurged a little). 
Piano stairs in Times Square, ie. the coolest staircase I have ever been on!

I ended up convincing Toby to walk to Sephora with me, even though it was more of a struggle for me. It was less than a 10 minute walk and I had acquired some rather nasty heat rash on my thighs already. It was pretty amazing. I didn't really spend as much time in there as I could have, but I was surprised at how expensive everything was! The Urban Decay Naked palettes worked out to about $70 AUD each and you can definitely get them cheaper on the internet, as well as all the Stila products I looked at. It was nice to be able to swatch them though instead of just relying on blog reviews, and I definitely need to get some Urban Decay products into my life! The same happened at MAC, I found the prices were pretty much the same as I'll find in the UK so I'm going to just wait and get some there. I have a lipstick from the Baking Beauties collection in mind which was out of stock when I went in today. There was a rather lovely sales assistant there though, and I had a little chat to him about my tattoos.

We ended up having a beer before walking back to the hotel to use the internet for a little bit and talk to our parents. I'm definitely addicted to my phone, so it was a bit annoying to not be able to check facebook every 5 minutes today, but really it's probably a good thing! We wanted to find a good Malaysian restaurant to eat dinner at, but after asking at reception for any good places to eat, realised we were in China town, and went to a place around the corner from the hotel that had cheap beers and ate there. Which was a really good choice because it was delicious! I had chicken noodle stirfry, and Toby had chicken satay skewers and both were really yummy. My sore legs meant we couldn't really do much after dinner because it hurts to walk, so we ended up going to a 7/11 to get pints of beer to take back to the hotel.
Photo from dinner. We sat next to the water feature which was nice.

We leave for London at 10am tomorrow, which means we get there at 4 in the afternoon, so there'll be plenty of time to look around a bit before bed, and find a good pub!

Sunday, 19 May 2013

My 'travel' makeup bag.

So I'm going to be away for around 8 months, and I have restricted myself to 2 relatively small makeup bags. I'm bringing a square Aesop bag I got as a birthday present, and a red polka dot bag I got from my last blog swap. They're pretty chokers, and some of the lip products don't fit, but I think it's pretty good considering what I could (want to) be bringing. I'm scared to think about how much I'll be bringing back because there are so many products available in the UK that I want to try out (especially sleek blushers!) I'll probably end up having to post most of it back!

Face/Base: Face of Australia 3 in 1 Primer, Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation, The Body Shop Extra Virgin Mineral Powder Foundation, Rimmel Stay Matte Powder, Maybelline Dream Lumi Touch Concealer(not shown) Covergirl Cheekers Blush in Soft Sable, Benefit Hervana, Body Shop Dome Blush in Pinch me Pink, MUA Shimmer Kisses Bronzer, Essence Renesme Red Blush.
I'm just going with basic face products here. I'll easily end up finishing this foundation while I'm there, and I plan on buying some MAC foundation at duty free. I also wanted to make sure I had a decent selection of blushes, even though blushes are something I plan on buying while I'm there. These don't take up much room (except for Hervana!).

Eyeshadows: MUA Undressed and Pretty Pastels, MAC Cranberry and Sketch, MUA Pro-Brow, Essence Glammy Goes To, Cappucino Please, Party All Night, L'Oreal Tender Caramel, Essence Cappucino Please, and Party All Night, MUA 19.
Eyeliner/Mascara: Covergirl Clump Crusher, Benefit BadGal Lash, Face of Australia Glamourous Lashes Waterproof Mascara and BudgeProof Gel eyeliner in blackest black, Covergirl Liquiline Liquid Liner, Essence Stay all Day in Glammy Goes To, Australis 10hour wear eye pencil in Grape Cake and Bombastic Bronze, Bourjois Clubbing waterproof Liner, Rimmel Scandal Eyes waterproof eyeliner in Nude.
I think I've got all the eye products I'll ever need here, especially for nudes! I've got 2 spaces in my MAC quad that I'm going to try and fill, probably with Shroom and Woodwinked (although, I'm up for suggestions!). I even bought a new Covergirl ClumpCrusher during the priceline 40% off sale that ended up being $6, because I knew Covergirl isn't easily available in the UK, and I'll have to throw out my current mascaras while I'm there. I might end up not bringing the Essence single shadows, because I have similar colours in Undressed, but I couldn't leave the L'Oreal shadow behind, mainly because of how much I paid for it (even though it was on sale!)

Lips: Revlon Lipbutters Sugar Plum, Peach Parfait and Strawberry Shortcake, MAC Ruby Woo, Vegas Volt, Angel and Rebel (not shown, as it was on its way from the lovley Sarah from More than Adored! when I took pictures), Rimmel Kate Moss #20, Sportsgirl Pout About it Catwalk Queen, Rimmel Apocalips Luna and Galaxy.

Almost everyone I talk to think I'm crazy for bringing so much lipstick, and the only person who doesn't agree is my friend who thinks I'm crazy for only bringing this much (she loves lipstick even more than me). In reality, I wear lipstick a lot and I bet I end up using all of these more than once. I've got a good selection of shades, including nudes, light pinks, plumbs, reds, bright pinks, and my favourite lip colour, corals. These are also some of my favourite lippies so I couldn't possibly leave them at home. I probably won't even buy many more lippies, unless it's at duty free, I'd love to get a YSL lipstick, and probably some more Apocalips. I might end up swapping the Sportsgirl lippy, as I'm tossing up between taking that and Innoxa Watermelon.

Nails: Sally Hansen Diamond Strength nail hardener and Diamond Shine Base and Top Coat, Ulta3 green mini, Essie Bikini So Teeny, Ulta3 Earl Grey, OPI Italian Love Affair and Rimmel Black Cherries.

I think narrowing down my nail polish was one of the hardest things about packing. Having someone to take care of my collection while I'm gone makes it a bit easier, because it's at least going to get used, but I love having a large range of colours I can use. I think I'll be buying a fair few polishes while I'm there though, I'd love to try some Barry M and Nails Inc! I will end up bringing a glitter, I'm tossing up between Heart of Glass and Studio 54, but I think Studio 54 is going to win!

Brushes: Real Techniques Stippling, Expert Face and Setting Brush, Thin Lizzy Powder Brush, Coastal ScenKabuki, Cosmetica double ended shadow brush, Australis Eyeshadow brush, Essence Eyeliner Brush, and Priceline eyelash curler (not shown)

 Of course I can't not bring brushes. They're all the brushes I'll need to use all of the products I'm bringing. I'll probably end up buying a Real Techniques blush brush, and throw out the Thin Lizzy powder brush (it's not that great anyway!)

What are your travel makeup essentials? Do you tend to overpack too?

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Face of Australia Studio 54 swatches!

As some of you may know, I've been after these for a while. It's not a problem of being able to find them, I just really wanted to get them during the Kmart sale when they were 75c, so I could get the whole lot. Unfortunately, that didn't work out, so I visited my local Priceline, who had a well stocked stand. I picked up Glass of Hearts which is by far my favourite (or at least, the idea of it is my favourite,  it needs more glitter!!) and Studio 54. When I first saw the collection, Studio 54 wasn't the first to jump out at me. Or the second. Or the third. I didn't really pay much attention to it until I heard everyone talking about it. And then I needed it! And I'm so glad I picked it up.

This is packed full of medium and small sized rose-gold coloured glitter! At first I was a bit unsure of how many colours this polish would go with, but then I decided to swatch a few. A few turned into a lot, and this polish seems to go with any colour! I seriously can't pick a favourite. Ok, maybe paired with Bourjous 19, or the Ulta3 blue mini. But really, they all look really lovely!
It only takes 3 coats to get a full nail of glitter, and one coat to become a lovely glitter top coat. The glitters aren't big enough to curl up, unlike some other glitters in this line.
I used it today over polish I thought was dry, and it took so long to dry! I tried using Essence quick dry drops, and they didn't work at all. I ended up messing up my thumbs and most of the nails on my right hand. I was using rather thick coats, so go easy with it  if you don't want to wait too long for it to dry. Luckily it should be a quick fix, as the glitter means the polish underneath doesn't have to be perfect.

Ulta3 Earl Grey, OPI Italian Love Affair, Essie Bikini So Teeny, Rimmel Black Out, Rimmel Black Cherries, Bourjois 19

Ulta3 Blue Mini, Sally Hansen Blue Me Away, OPI The One That Got Away, Rimmel Misty Jade, Ulta3 Party Shoes and Revlon Silver Dollar.

Did you get to take advantage of the $4 off FOA sale? What's your favourite polish from this line?

Review: MUA Glitterball

This is a review I've been putting off for some time now. I haven't really used this palette much, and I didn't want to do a really negative review on it. I have managed to pick it up a few times recently so I thought it was time to write this.
When I first got this palette, I did a quick swatch of it and was really unimpressed, which is why it sat in my makeup draw untouched. The pink shade stood out to me one day recently though so I picked it up and was a lot happier with it than my first impression.
I found these shadows aren't very pigmented. They seem quite crumbly and chunky, and are really hard to blend, as you can kind of see in the swatches. They also aren't as glittery as you would expect from a palette named Glitterball, and you can see 1 and 3 came up mostly matte! Some colours are better than others, with my favourites being the pink(7) and brown(10) shades, and the pink can become quite bright if you pack it on. The gold colour(8) isn't as good as the golds in Undressed, which is unfortunate because it's a lovely colour. I think I don't use this as much is because a lot of the colours aren't ones I'd go for, especially the greens. The black would also be particularly useless as you can't blend it well. They produce a lot of fall out, which is something I haven't experienced before with MUA shadows. I should have probably given it a better go before totally dismissing it, but the first impression really stuck.

Swatches in sunlight
Overall, these shadows aren't nearly as good as other MUA shadows I've used. I'm going to try and get Glamour Days or Starry Nights, which is what I would have originally gotten if they were in stock at the time I placed my order.

Have you used this palette before? Or another MUA palette?

Monday, 13 May 2013

Weekly nail: Polka Dots and Glitter

Im sorry that these posts may seem to be starting to get a bit repetitive, but I really like pastels and I really like polka dots! I decided to give MUA's Pistachio Ice Cream another go, because there are a few colours of their polish I want to get when I'm in England, and so far I've hated this polish. It's safe to say that the reason this polish is so bad is the brush. It's so hard and leaves streaks. I put it over Face of Australia Castle On a Cloud (I accidentally painted all my nails) and it was perfect in one layer! I'm still not happy with the colour, i'd rather more green (although, against the purple of Castle on a Cloud it looks quite green) but now they've changed their brushes I'm keen to try out more colours. I also finally bought some of the new face of Australia glitters! I wasn't able to get them during the 75c Kmart sale, so I only bought 2. I used Heart of Glass over Castle on a Cloud and I'm pretty happy with it. Obviously I would have preferred of it had more glitter, and more hearts (I did 3 coats on both my middle fingers and no hearts were seen) but I bought it after reading many reviews, so I can't really complain! I'll have a post up later this week with the other polish I bought, Studio 54, which I'm over the moon with!
MUA Pistachio Ice Cream, Face of Australia Castle on a Cloud and Heart of Glass.

I've only got 3 days left of work now, and I leave the country next week! The boyfriend and I had our goodbye drinks to see some friends before we left and it was seriously so fun! We had so many friends show up, and even though I'm going to see most of them again before I leave, it was nice to hang out with them. I've got a pretty full schedule this week. I'm going to get ice cream on Wednesday night with friends, dinner with work friends Thursday, a 21st on Friday, going up to Sydney for the day on Sunday, then I'm having coffee with a friend on Monday and then going to dinner with some other friends. Not sure when I'll have time to hang out with my family, or even pack my bag! (Just kidding, I did most of my packing last night because I got too excited and I'm going to just leave everything in there!)

Saturday, 11 May 2013

My life in Pictures #7

I've been meaning to do another one of these posts for a while now, but my life has been so full of work that my instagram feed hasn't really been interesting enough to post!
1. Having a BBQ with friends (a very, very long time ago!)
2. I went to say hi to a friend working in Cotton On Kids one lunch time, and I walked out wearing a pair of pink glittery flats. They're kids size 3 and they fit my feet perfectly!
3. Doing a trail pack of my suitcase. This was when I was pulling everything out of my wardrobe and dumping it in my suitcase - hence the coat hangers. I really didn't think it'd all fit but it did, woo!
4. Wearing Rimmel Apocalips in Galaxy.

5. The ally way next to a club I went to drinks with friends at. It has a really good echo so we do a thing called space claps.
6. Watching local band Julia and the Deep Sea Sirens at Groovin the Moo.
7. Getting my costume sorted for a 21st next weekend. I'm going as the Wicked Witch of the West, and I even bought green face paint. I will post photos of the full costume!
8. The boyfriend and I had our going away drinks on Friday night! I got a little bit sad but I also had so much fun hanging out with all of my friends. I was amazed how many people turned up!

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

The 'This or That' Tag

This is a tag I've seen on a few blogs lately, and I was tagged by Sally from The Makeup Directory and  Sammi from MaterialGurl88 (who also changed some questions to be more Australian friendly!)

Blush or Bronzer? Blush for sure! I have a hard time making bronzer work for my pale skin so I just stick to blush.

Lip Gloss or Lipstick? Lipstick is my favourite kind of makeup!

Eyeliner or Mascara? Mascara is something that I always use, no matter what look I'm going for or how much time I spend

Foundation or Concealer? I rarely use concealer, just under eye concealer whenever I haven't gotten enough sleep or when I'm going out at night. I almost always use foundation though.

Neutral or Colour Eyeshadow? Neutral! I find it hard to wear coloured eyeshadow without looking too 'done up'. Neutrals are always

Pressed or Loose Eyeshadow? Pressed. Loose shadows scare me.

Brushes or Sponges? Brushes. I've never used a sponge to apply my foundation before.

Opi or China Glaze? I've never actually tried China Glaze! I never got around to making an order for some, so I'll have to say OPI because I have a little collection, even though I'd rather stick to cheaper polish like Ulta3.

Long or Short? I'd really like to have long healthy nails, but my nails are in a horrible condition so it's hard to grow them.

Acrylic or Natural? Natural. I do love the length strength acrylic nails give you, but then when you take them off your natural nails are destroyed.

Brights or Darks? I love bright colours!

Flower or No Flower? I should try doing a flower. But I think that would be lame. I prefer to use nail guide stickers and doing polka dots.

Perfume or Body Splash? Perfume. Always smells nicer.

Lotion or Body Butter? I have really dry skin so I love using body butters.

Body wash or Soap? Body wash and scrub.

Lush or other Bath Company? I can't choose between Lush and The Body Shop! Please don't make me.

Jeans or Sweat Pants? Jeans. I'm not a big fan of wearing trackies, even around the house.

Long Sleeve or Short? Short. I only own a handful of long sleeved tops/dresses and they're all 3/4 sleeve and I usually push them up above my elbow anyway.

Dresses or Skirts? I'm definitely a dress girl. I own a few skirts, but I don't really own any nice tops to wear them with.

Stripes or Plaid?
I love stripes.

Flip Flops or Sandals? Sandals. I only ever wear Flip Flops to the beach.

Scarves or Hats? I like wearing scarves, but only when it's cold.

Studs or Dangly Earrings? Studs. I had my ears stretched to 8mm, and even though I took them out over a year ago, they haven't quite shrunk back down, so wearing anything other than studs looks weird.

Necklaces or Bracelets? Necklaces. I don't like wearing bacelets much because I get eczema on my wrists a lot.

Heels or Flats? Flats! Even though I'm tiny, I prefer to be able to walk properly. I don't mind wearing heels on the odd occasion when I go out drinking or to dinner, but I even wore flats to my uni graduation!

Cowboy Boots or Riding Boots? I like a good pair of ankle boots. I wouldn't mind a pair of cowboy boots (for the novelty, mostly) but otherwise neither!

Jacket or Hoodie? I'm a cardigan girl. I wear hoodies more when I'm being lazy and it's cold.

Cotton On or Valley Girl? (original question - Forever 21 or Charlotte Rousse?) I work at Cotton On so I should choose that, but I've always preferred the dresses at Valley Girl. Although, I haven't stepped foot in Valley Girl in a very long time (being poor and not being able to wear their clothes at work), and I kind of want to buy everything in Cotton On at the moment.

Forever New or Portmans? (original question - Abercrombie or Hollister?) 
I really don't f

David Jones or Myer? (original question - Saks 5th Avenue or Nordstroms?) I prefer Myer, I don't really feel like I fit in at David Jones, so I much prefer Myer.

Curly or Straight? I like to wear my hair curly. It's naturally curly so it's a lot easier than spending 15 minutes straightening it.

Bun or Ponytail? Ponytail

Bobby Pins or Butterfly Clips? I only really use a bobby pin to put my fringe back when I'm doing my make up or washing my face.

Hair Spray or Gel? I don't use either!

Long or Short? Long Hair! I had to cut my hair really short (I had a Ramona Flowers hair cut!) the year before last because I bleached the crap out of it and it was all falling out. 18 months later and my hair still isn't as long as I want it :(

Light or Dark? I suit darker hair, and it's so much easier to maintain.

Side Sweep Bangs or Full Bangs? I prefer my hair with a fringe. Since high school I've alternated with side fringe and full fringe every few months. I've had a side fringe for a while now and I'm thinking of getting it cut to a full fringe before I go to England.

Up or Down? I prefer to have my hair up. It gets in my way too much down!

Rain or Shine? I love the rain, it smells pretty and it makes it not so hot.

Summer or Winter? I definitely prefer winter! I'd rather be rugged up and toasty than hot and sweaty!

Autumn or Spring? I would prefer spring, but I'm terrified of swooping magpies, so I'll have to go autumn. Lucky, because I get 2 autumns this year!

Chocolate or Vanilla? Is this even a question? Chocolate, duh!

East or West coast? I don't really care? I went to Perth for a holiday and it was really nice seeing the sun set over the water.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Weekly Nail: Pink Glitter

I've been wanting to try something like this for quite a while, after seeing a manicure similar to it on Tumblr a while ago. I was really keen to paint my nails pastel pink.
I used Bourjois number 13, and Ulta3 Lollypop Lilac. The bourjois polish is really sheer, and I needed 4 coats to get it this opaque. You could still kinda see through the tips of my nails, but that's not really an issue because I was painting over the tips. My bottle of lollypop lilac is getting really gluggy, which meant my tips weren't smooth at all. That could also be because I used super long nail stickers and managed to wipe 3 tips off while taking the stickers off!
There's only 2 weeks till we leave for England now! I'm getting kinda nervous! We're going to be gone for about 8 months!
I've been thinking about what it's going to mean for blogging too. The boyfriend doesn't really 'get' blogging, so I don't know how he'll feel if I spend a few hours a week on it! I got an ipad mini, so I should be able to write up quick blogs on there, but I'll probably end up writing more about our travels than beauty products (even though I would love to write about all the new products I'll be able to get over there!) I'm still unsure whether I want to start a new blog all together, so I can properly document our travels and I'll feel less weird about letting friends and family read it.
I'm probably not going to get much time to blog between now and when I leave, even though I have a few things I want to post about (I want to show you all the makeup I'm taking with me, because I'm pretty proud of how little I'm taking). So sorry in advance!

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Shopping my Stash: Covergirl Cheekers blush in Soft Sable

I won this blush last year in a facebook competition, and after I bought a few Elf blushes, and then Benefit Hervana and Sugarbomb, it made it's way to the bottom of my makeup draw. I've been trying to rotate my blushes so I can give them all a bit of love before I leave, and rediscovered this! And boy is it pretty.

I think the best way I can describe the colour of this is pumpkin spice, which I think is a great colour for autumn. It even smells a little bit like cinnamon! (which it may not, when it comes to cosmetics I find my sense of smell can be a little broken). It's got a hint of shimmer to it, which you can't tell in the pan, but shows up well in the swatches.
The brush it comes with is pretty useless, and I usually use a kabuki to apply it. It's a little hard to get the product onto a big brush like a kabuki, but really not that big of a deal. It also works well as a kind of contour. I haven't been able to use bronzers as contours, so this is a good stepping stone into contouring for me!
It lasts ok, but I rarely find that blushes last very long on me. I think it has something to do with my foundation not lasting very long. The blended swatch below didn't turn out very pigmented, but I find the colour shows up a lot better on my cheeks, which you can see in my most recent outfit/FOTD post here.

heavy swatch and blended in sunlight.

This is a product I'd definitely recommend. I love blushers that are a bit darker and brown toned, and I've found them a little hard to find (maybe I just haven't been looking hard enough?). You can buy this in Priceline for less than $10, which I think is pretty decent.