Sunday, 2 December 2012

Christmas Gift Guide for Girls!

1. iPod Touch 5th Generation in Pink: The brand new iPod comes in such gorgeous colours - the first time Apple have branched out in to colours other than white or black for the iPod touch. This is on my Christmas list because I've had my old iPod for years and I think it's time I get a new one which actually tells you the proper battery level, the volume doesn't stick if you scroll too fast and isn't so scratched that you can't see into the reflective back at all. 

2. Beauty Blender: I've been really fascinated by this make-up sponge for ages and I think it would be a perfect gift for anyone beauty obsessed.

3. Taylor Swift 'Red': Come on. Who doesn't love a bit of Taylor Swift playing in the background?

4. Real Techniques Core Collection: I am pretty sure you will have heard everybody under the sun rave about these brushes and, despite the fact I STILL haven't tried them myself, I am sure whoever you are buying for will love them.

5. Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser: A true cult beauty product. I love this and wouldn't use any other cleanser now and would happily buy it as a gift for any other member of the female species.

6. Topshop MIGHTY Boots: These are absolutely gorgeous. I want them nowwwwww. I think they will suit a lot of people's tastes and the black will go with absolutely everything. I would be ecstatic if someone bought me these for Christmas. (hint hint)

7. Nails Inc Runway Collection: A gorgeous mix of colours. Includes 6 full sizes polishes, one mini Caviar top coat and a Nails Inc nail file. I lovvvvve the Hero Shade in there, 'Porchester Square'. I already have it and it is absolutely stunning. Quite fancy that sparkly one in there....

8. The Hunger Games: How about a set of the Hunger Games books?! If you know someone who hasn't read these books, buy them as a present. Seriously, best books to ever grace my bookshelf.

9. Vera Wang 'Princess': You can't beat a nice perfume for Christmas. This one by Vera Wang is delicious. Really girly and sweet but sophisticated and cool at the same time. One of my all-time favourites. Wowee.

Andddddd...... IT'S 23 DAYS TILL CHRISTMAS!!!!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Modalu Kiera Olive Small Grab/Satchel Bag

First of all, I would like to apologise for being absent for a whopping two weeks. I have my prelims coming up a lot sooner than I would like - they start in two days in fact - and I have had literally no social life between studying and fundraising for my 3 week trip to Nepal in 2014 (see my recent post here), never mind  getting a chance to blog too. Yes, it has been pretty hectic but I know I can't abandon my little baby completely so here I am! Keep in mind, however, posts will be limited over the next few weeks throughout the duration of my prelims. If you don't know what these are, they are mega important exams for all your subjects in school - I do 8 subjects - so that if you are unable to do your proper exam during May time next year or you mess them up, you can appeal to the SQA and use the grade you got for this exam as a back-up. I have English on Monday, Maths on Tuesday, Geography on Wednesday, Modern Studies on Thursday, Chemistry on Friday, Physics the following Monday, Administration on Thursday and Friday and then Graphics the Monday after that. Whew! Exhausted (and nervous) just thinking about it.

On to the real reason for this post. I recently got a new bag from my mum's friend - brand new, never been used - and I am in love. It is from the brand Modalu, famously known for being the favourite of Pippa Middleton. They even have renamed the bag which Pippa has in a whole range of colours to - very fittingly - 'Pippa'. I already own a couple of bags from them and also a purse which I adore. Modalu is amazing, albeit expensive. All products are 100% real leather and amazing quality at that and this is no exception.

This beautiful olive-toned leather satchel bag is utterly to die for. I am not always a fan of studs, I think they can sometimes be overkill if too many are used, but this is just perfection. The leather exterior is gorgeous and smooth and I know it will last me for a long time. As most real leather often is, there are some ever so slightly distressed patches which adds to the overall prettiness of it. The handle is relatively long so it sits sort of on my hip but you can shorten it if you wish. However, this is my preferred length of strap so this is the length I have chosen to set it at. Even though it has no zip, it is still really secure with four popper studs and a little fold over clasp holding the bag shut. The stunning interior fabric makes me love it even more! It is incredibly spacious inside, much more so than I would have expected. Inside are a phone pouch, a slightly larger pouch and a zip pocket, all adding to the security of the bag. On the back of the bag is another pocket which is also unbelievable big with a popper stud clasp to close it. Again, this pocket is lined with the beautiful floral pattern.

I am a huge huge huge fan of this bag despite the fact I have only had it in my possession for a couple of weeks. The olive colour is perfect for this time of year and matches to all the lovely winter colours, especially wine colours, reds, greens, browns, blacks and even some paler colours such as cream. It is extremely versatile and I think I will be wearing it all year round with brighter colours in the summer like corals and pinks.

This bag retails for around £115. It is no longer available on the Modalu website but you can just google 'Modalu Kiera Olive Small Grab Bag' and you should find it around somewhere.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

OOTD: Stripes Day for Children In Need

As I am sure you are well aware, yesterday was Children in Need day so my school had it's annual 'spots and stripes' day to raise a bit of money for the charity. I'm not a huge spots and stripes kind of person but I was shopping last week and saw this stripey jumper in Primark for only £6 which would do the trick just nicely.

If you don't know (if not, what planet are you from?!), Children in Need are a charity designed to raise money for children all over the world to get them in to better living conditions, better education and generally just give them a better life. If you want to read more about the organisation, visit the BBC Children in Need website here. Every November, there is a massive national fundraiser with schools all over the UK taking part as well as indivuals and other companies. There is also a televised show on the day with singers, celebrities and this year, Olympic athletes taking part (even Tom Daley, yum).

So, by just donating £1 at my school, we were allowed to dress down in our casual clothes rather than our uniforms as long as we had on spots and/or stripes. Of course some people went all out but I went for the more subtle look that actually looked really quite nice.

Actually so much nicer in person
Image from Topshop website
Jumper - £6 Primark
Owl snood - [roughly] £4 Primark
Jeans - £? River Island (price unkown, bought them in the Boxing Day sales 2 years ago and they're still going strong)
Belt - [roughly] £1 Primark
Pudsey badge - £2 for pack of two Boots (money goes to the charity)
Boots - £ Topshop

I was so cosy all day in my big knitted jumper. It is definitely going to be a must for those really cold days in winter. That would probably include today actually. It is freeeeeezing outside. Pity the jumper is in the wash.

Totally unrelated but can you believe it is only 38 days till Christmas?!?! That means just 42 till my birthday as well!

Oh, one final thing! Almost finished, I swear... Let me know what you think of my new blog design. Made the header all by my little self and I am really proud of it! The whole shabang took me ages this afternoon but now it is all finally complete and I love it. Please tell me you love it too!

Monday, 12 November 2012

Nailed: Navy Glitter

With flash
With flash
2 coats Nails Inc 'Motcomb Street', 1 coat Rimmel I <3 Lasting Finish 'Disco Ball', 1 coat Natural Collection 'Crystal Clear'

Aloha! Long time no see. Well, since Monday. I have my prelims in December so I have been attempting to knuckle down and get some studying done. It hasn't been too successful as of yet, I am a faithful procrastinator.

Last night, whilst watching the X Factor, I decided to repaint my nails. I don't often go for glitter because it is such a PAIN to get off but I really fancied the idea of these two polishes together so I just bit the bullet and went for it. OOOH BRAVE.

This combination of the two nail polishes will most likely be well worn this winter on my nails. It is so pretty! I had two shop assistants comment on it today when I was shopping with the mother. It keeps on catching the light and I just want to admire it constantly. So proud of my handiwork. The glitter nail polish is so... glittery. Hahaha, well duh. As well as silver sparkles, it contains teeny tiny little blue sparkles as well which looks gorgeous with the dark navy. The darker base colour is very appropriate for this time of year as we descend in to the cooler months unbelievably fast. Can you believe it is only 44 days till Christmas?! I have a countdown on my phone. I am such a little kid.

Ohhh, I'm a Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here starts tonight! I love that show to bits. I never know who the contestants are but Ant and Dec are absolute gems.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

October Favourites

Dark Red (Red) Teen Red Heart Print Dress | 253715061 | New Look
Couldn't get good pictures of the dress and jacket because it's dark outside and I need to rely on
artificial lighting. Pictures were taken from New Look and Topshop.

Clearasil Ultra Rapid Action Scrub
Benefit High Beam
Benefit Erase Paste
Asda Skinsystem Cleansing Lotion
BCBG 'Fearless' bracelet (link is to black version, can't find white in Macy's)
Fake Links of London friendship bracelet (link to a similar ebay seller)
Topshop leather jacket
New Look dress

Cannot get my head around the fact that it is November already! And 50 days till Christmas! Where does the time go? And since we are now 5 days in to November, I realise that I am 5 days late doing my October favourites. Oops. To be fair, I have had a busy week. I was at a concert on Wednesday in Glasgow and there was fireworks on Saturday night for Bonfire Night, also known as Guy Fawkes night, which I think is just a British tradition. I then stayed over at one of my best friends houses, Laura.  Also present was my other two best friends. We had a little mini party there because we were meant to be going out for Laura's boyfriend's birthday but change of plans. Fair to stay I felt like collapsing and puking all yesterday. Ahem.

Moving on before I admit to anything I don't mean to.
This month, I had quite a bad breakout of spots on my face so I set off to Asda on a mission to find a miracle spot treatment. I picked up Clean & Clear treatment gel (review here) which did not do the trick but I did find one little beauty. The Clearasil face scrub claims to make skin visibly clearer within 12 hours and although this is not the case, after around a week of using it twice daily, my face has remarkably improved. I shall do a review soon.
Benefit High Beam has also been a necessary part in my morning routine to wake my face up a bit. This is just a tester size but I might buy the full size when this is done.
I also got back to using Benefit Erase Paste under my eyes. I used this for a while last year and then got a new one for my Christmas last year and then never really used it. After running out of my undereye concealer, I broke this bad boy out as I had nothing else and found that I do in face love it.
I have also been using the Asda cleansing lotion because I needed a new cleanser that was just really cheap till I got a chance to buy a better one and at a mere £1.80, this was an absolute steal. Turns out I adore it! It leaves my skin so so so soft and clean. I use it after my face scrub, morning and night. Just a quick sweep across my face. It is free from parabens and fragrances so it doesn't break out my skin look fragranced products tend to.
Next, my friend Emma brought me back a BCBGeneration bracelet from her trip to New York in the October holidays. She brought back this bracelet, which I have worn every single day since I got it.
I especially love wearing with my fake Links of London friendship bracelet which my mum's friend gave me. She is always buying them to sell in her shop, and I have one in basically every colour but the black is my favourite.
I have been loving wearing dresses casually lately and I have worn this one so much you would think I would be sick of it.
And my leather jacket which does have a detachable fur collar which I haven't worn it with yet but I think it is getting cold enough to whip it out. I LOVE this jacket. It goes with everything and just makes any outfit look amazing.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Clean & Clear Advantage Spot Treatment Gel

Spots are my weakness. As I am sure a lot of people will agree, when you have a spot on your face you feel like everyone is looking at it and it is all they can see. And while this is most likely not the case, I can't help but do everything I can to disguise them when they are in a really obvious place. My fringe does hide any on my forehead (which is awesome) but around my nose and mouth is a tiny bit harder to cover with hair... Last week I had a GINORMOUS spot right on my lip. It was nasty. I hate spots that sit right on the edge of my top lip, they make my lips look swollen and horrible. And they really hurt every time you move your mouth!

So, with a purpose of finding a miraculous cure, I set off to Asda to buy something that would hopefully calm it down as well as any other spots on my face. I seem to be having quite a bad month just now in terms of spots. My face seems to breaking out quite a lot, and not just at THAT TIME OF THE MONTH either. I also bought a face scrub in Asda which I shall review soon as well.

Also available in Boots and Superdrug.

The other product I picked up was Clean & Clear's Advantage Spot Treatment Gel. I think I may have used this a good few years back but I can't really remember how I got on with it so I decided to give it another try. And besides, it was reduced to just £3 (from £4).

Clean & Clear say: Immediate action. Helps reduce spots within 4 hours. Helps keep spots away*
*with daily usage
How to use: Apply the invisible gel directly on this spot. Suitable to use under and over make-up, whenever needed.

Let me just start off by saying, DON'T USE THIS OVER MAKE-UP. It literally just ruins all your hard work from the morning and wipes all the foundation, concealer, blusher and whatnot off. I ended up with a circle of my face that was a slight different colour because all the make-up had been rubbed off that area. It made my spot appear more prominent. Not a good look.

As for "helps reduce spots within 4 hours", LIES. Pure, utter, LIES. Feeling quite happy with myself knowing that my spot would be reduced in just 4 little hours, I applied the gel to the monstrosity of my lip and not so patiently waited for it to take place. Hence my disappointment 10 hours later when my spot looked exactly the same as before. At least it didn't look any worse, but it didn't look any better either. I also found it dried out my spots a little bit. Some people say that is good because it helps them to heal quicker but it just made my make-up sit very unattractively over it.

Reading reviews on the internet, I have found that there are a lot of mixed reviews out there. Some people say it worked wonders, others say it made their spots worse or did nothing at all. Sadly, I fall in to that nothing at all category. But you never know, maybe you will be in luck and it will work for you. It's worth a try as it isn't especially dear but don't expect any miracles.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

I am going to Nepal!! (in 2014)

I only just thought not long ago that I could maybe write about this so since I have a little bit of free time tonight I am going to knuckle down and do it. (Whenever I hear that, I always imagine someone with really long arms that touch the ground so their knuckles are just dragging along behind them. Don't worry, you don't have to tell me I am weird. I already know.)

I have known about this for about a fortnight now so it is pretty impressive that I have been gloating about it every day considering how EXCITED I am. Soooo... I'm going to Nepal! 

Nepal is in the Middle East, round about India I. Obviously living in Scotland puts me good bit away from Nepal so we would have to fly to Kathmandu. The time difference will be quite a lot as well, I'd imagine. It will be a 3 week expedition in the summer of 2014 which is quite a while away but keep in mind the whole thing has to be fundraised! It is £3200 per person and there is roughly 17 (ish) people going through my school so that's over £50,000 that has to be raised! Hopefully we will manage to fundraise it all (and more).

Week 1 will be the 'Charity Phase'. It hasn't been finalised quite yet so we don't know what it is we will be doing but it could be anything from helping to build new classrooms and schools for local children, teaching the children in the schools or even installing water systems in the local area. We will also be bringing school supplies with us, like pencils and notebooks, which our rucksacks will be loaded with (ughhh I can just imagine the weight on my back) to give out when we are there. 
Week 2 is the trekking week. We will be climbing up mountains in the Himalayas, possibly the Annapurna,  for around a week and camping = no washing for a week. Yum. Bet I'll smell great after that. 
Then the final week is our 'recreation' week. We can basically do whatever we want (as a group). I fancy going to the Chitwan National Park which is a safari park where we would get to go on a safari ride on an elephant and wash the elephants too! How cute. I love elephants. I think they are my favourite zoo animal. Random piece of information about me there!

Annapurna mountains
I will keep you updated with what's going on probably, mainly because I am so excited about it and I want somewhere to share it with! I know it is not really anything to with what my blog is about, and it is anything but a glamorous trip!! To think that next year I am going to New York, one of the fashion capitals of the world, and then a year later will be trekking through the Himalayas and teaching school children! It is like a gap year all crammed in to 3 weeks. 

On a side note, Halloween is next week! Despite Halloween being on Wednesday night, my school is having the party on Tuesday. I have a love/hate relationship with Halloween. I love dressing up and going to a party but I think the whole thing can be quite tacky. But never mind. Any excuse for a party, as I always say! I'm dressing up as an angel. I only just ordered my outfit tonight so it better come in time, I don't know what I would do if it didn't! I'm glad the party isn't on Wednesday because I'm going to Tyler Hilton's concert then at King Tut's in Glasgow. I'll do an OOTD for that sometime next week, I think I am wearing a new leopard print peplum top with black jeans and my tan wedge shoe boots from New Look that I love so much. 

This is my costume, bought here for £9.99. I'm going to stitch a lace panel at the bust though because it is a little bit too revealing for my taste... The wings are beautiful though.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

A nice little surprise from What's In My Handbag

I got a lovely surprise this morning when the doorbell rang and my dad shouted up the stairs to me, "Holly, there is a parcel for you. What have you wasted your money on this time?" Personally, I find that very offensive as all those nail varnishes and lip glosses are necessities in my life but being a typical dad, he doesn't understand these things. To this, I was very confused because I haven't ordered anything recently so I came downstairs to see what on earth he was on about. Seeing my confusion, he thought that it was "something for my Christmas" even though it was addressed to me. Ahh, men.

It turns out it was a package from What's In My Handbag (WIMH). Every week there is a special 'try' that you can apply to be sent and a handful of people are chose to receive, totally free of charge. Sort of like a competition, I guess. There are some good offers on beauty products on the website, and you can look through other people's handbags. You have your own 'beauty cabinet' where if you see something in someone else's bag that you want, then you click 'I want this' or if you have it, 'I have this'. I hope I am making sense but then I rarely do, so... To really know what I am mumbling about, just head on over and sign up. It's free!

I thought I read somewhere on their website that you receive an email if you have been selected to try something out but maybe not, because I never saw no email in my inbox (brilliant grammar there Holly) unless I skipped over it like I do with countless emails. I get so much junk, you know?! I actually kind of liked the fact that I never knew I was getting it, it just turned up this morning unexpectedly. Woohoo, I love surprises!

I got a bit carried away when taking my snaps. Prepare to be bombarded.

Love my very precise unpackaging of the tissue paper. Not. 
And how cute was it that they put in that personalised sticker?! Impressed - 

The try I received was from a week or two ago and it was Emma Hardie Amazing Face Moringa Cleansing Balm. It also came with an Emma Hardie cleansing cloth, not to different from the Liz Earle muslin cloth. This cloth is like the Liz Earle one on one side and a much softer, generic face cloth on the other. The muslin side is for a more exfoliating clean, whilst the super-soft side is for more delicate areas, such as around your eyes.  The cleansing balm smells absolutely beautiful! It feels kind of oily and slimy, but still really nice if that is possible. Like a massage oil. I hope this works for my oily skin! It is the same kind of idea as Liz Earle Cleanse & Polish. Sort of. You put a 'couple of drops' (how you get a couple of drops from a solid product, I have no idea) into the palm of you hand and add a bit of water to create a cream which you then apply to your face and massage in to dissolve make-up, grime and excess oils. You then soak the cloth in warm water and wipe off, à la Liz Earle. I am so excited to try this out tonight, although it won't be removing any makeup as I am going swimmingin an hour (as I do every Monday, look at me being all exercise-y) which will just wash it all off anyway.

I promise to do a full review when I have tested this out properly but give me a couple of weeks, okay? I want to give it a fair test before I decide whether or not I like it. Can't really do that in one night, but I will have a fair idea beforehand. Check twitter later tonight to see how I get on with my first try! (@hollylikes2blog)

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Nailed: Monochrome Spots

Black and white are two colours that, for some reason unbeknown to me, I have always loved together. I don't know what it is, but I love pairing the two contrasting colours together. It's like going back to basics - simple yet chic (so totally love that word).

And that was my inspiration for my nails today. Something that would go with everything, yet still not be boring and look like I just flung it on. It did take a good while to do - although I was watching a movie at the same time which may have factored in the time frame - but I reckon it was worth it.

17 Fast Finish 'Nightshade' // Avon Nail Experts French Manicure 'White' // Avon Nail Experts Peeling and Brittleness Solver

I applied 2 coats of the black nail polish, then dipped my nail dotting tool in to the white nail varnish and then finished off with one coat of the clear nail polish. I don't think that is meant to be used as a top coat, most likely as a base coat, but I run out of mine last week and this was the only other thing I could use. 
This nail dotting tool is an actual lifesaver when it comes to creating spotty nails. I honestly couldn't do it without it. I bought my pack of 5 here for only £2.19. Each of the 5 are double-ended, so it really is a bargain. They are all different sizes to create different sized dots, whatever your preference. After you have used one, clean the end with a bit of nail polish remover on a cotton pad and then use again! Brilliant, just brilliant. 
I am totally in love with this look. I wore it once before and I received more compliments on them than I ever have before with my nails! The woman at the till in New Look said she loved them, as did my geography teacher and loads of people at school. I just love it when people comment on my nails! 
I think I will be wearing spotty nails more and more as the weeks go on. You can wear them to suit any outfit, just switch up the colours to match! But personally, this monochrome look is my favourite. As we progress in to winter, I don't want to wear too many bright colours on my nails as I feel that is more suited to spring and summer, so this is perfect for transitioning in to the colder season. Not that that will stop me from going all out with neon nails or anything. 

What's your favourite nail look for winter?

P.S Quite impressed by how my photos turned out for this post, what do you think?!