Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Boots Beauty Advent Calendar - 24 Days of Beauty Treats

I don't know if you know how excited I am about this... I AM SO EXCITED... I HAVE NO WORDS! Me... with no words, hard to believe, right? Haha, well, just look at it! 24 days of beauty treats! (did you really think that the lack of words would really last? (; ) The first mention of a beauty advent calendar was this one, and there have been many since (see Benefit, Ciate etc) but this is the one that made me bounce in my seat at the mere thought of ordering... and order I did! This is going to replace my traditional chocolate advent calendar (I'm saying this now... how long will it last? Will I cave and get a Galaxy one... probably...) and i'm very excited about it. I'm not going to mention what's in it... as I kind of know... but for those who just want to know right now! There is a list of products on the post that ReallyRee did about this calendar, and the one that ignited my desire to own it, and that can be found here

So this is just a quick little post about the excitement I get whenever I look at this little (not really) beauty, and I cannot wait to start opening it, come December 1st <3 For those interested parties, the calendar retails at £30 and is available from Boots. I've not seen it in store, so I ordered mine from online, but you never know, maybe it'll appear in store closer to December. 

Do you have a beauty calendar this year? Or are you tempted by any? Let me know (:


Sunday, 27 October 2013

Empty Products - October 2013

Isn't it always a sad moment when you use up a good product? The four products above are wonderful, but I've done some repurchasing, so I feel no remorse over finishing them. Luckily for me, I ordered three of La Roche-Posay's Serozinc when I first discovered them, so I'll be good for a while, and I do find that when used twice a day, they do last for a good few weeks (or maybe that's just me?) Serozinc is a wonderful product, so much so that it's had it's own review, which can be found here and it is a staple product in my skincare routine. I spray after cleansing, and it tones my face very well, and also reduces the amount of oil produced by my skin, which is a big plus for me with my oily/combination skin. 

Una Brennan's Neroli Eye Cream is amazing. It's not greasy and absorbs really well, and is a lovely base for foundation and concealer; I find that it doesn't cause creases or anything like that, which is wonderful. I use Maybelline's Eraser Eye concealer under the eyes and I find that it doesn't crease at all, it just sits well. 

Garnier's Moisture Match Moisturiser for oily/combination skin provides a really good base for my makeup, as it's not greasy or oily, and I find that it mattifies my skin, almost acting like a primer before I  apply my makeup. Setting my makeup with a pressed powder means that my makeup lasts for the entire day, but does need some touching up around the nose and t-zone area. 

Soap & Glory's Sugar Crush Scrub is a citrusy, sugar scrub that makes my skin so soft and moisturised after usage. It comes in a lovely big pot, and lasted my for quite a while, as I only use it twice a week or so. There's something about it that makes me wakeup and feel alive in the morning (i'm sure you know what I mean) especially with the days getting shorter, and the morning getting darker and darker. This has been one of my favourite scrubs that i've ever used, but now i've moved on to trying The Body Shop's Brazil Nut scrub, which smells amazing.

What products have you used up this month? Would you try any of these?


Saturday, 26 October 2013

Liz Earle Eyebright Soothing Eye Lotion Review

This is my first Liz Earle product. Are you shocked? Well, it's true. This is my first dip into the large world that is Liz Earle skincare, and when I bought it, I was very excited. The Liz Earle counter in John Lewis looked so clean, and almost like the inside of a chemist... in a good way, like an expensive chemist with glass shelves... anyway, I bought this after reading review after review, and the response was good. I have very sensitive skin, but since reading about Liz Earle and taking a look at the list of ingredients, which include Aloe Vera, Glycerin, Witch hazel Water and Cornflower extract, I decided that this was a product for me. The natural ingredients really appealed to me, especially when my eyes are concerned, and the product has not disappointed.

The top of the product is a twist top, so you twist it, and a little spout protrudes from the top, allowing you to dispense the product in an easy and effective way without it getting messy (usually, i'm so messy, stuff goes everywhere). I dispense the product into two cotton wool pads and then hold the pads over my eyes for about five minutes, although you can leave them on for up to ten if you have more time. What struck me about using this approach, is that I can sit down with a cup of tea in the morning, and have the cotton wool over my eyes as my tea cools, so it's a very relaxing start to the day, which is always good by me. The product soothes tired eyes, but also, because it's a cool liquid, it also wakes them up, and in my experience, de-puffs them, which is brilliant because if you suffer from puffy eyes, this is a product for you to try. This product retails at £10.75 from Liz Earle, or John Lewis, which is where I purchased mine from, and more information can be found on the Liz Earle site here. This product is a lovely thing, and really makes me look awake in the morning (which seems to be getting harder and harder as the mornings get darker) but I feel that this could be used as a pick me up for eyes at any time of day, though I would only do it on bare skin, because it would strip all of the eye makeup off.

What do you think of this soothing eye lotion? Is this something that you'd try? 


Thursday, 24 October 2013

Origins Super Spot Remover Review

Ever since I bought this little wonder, I've been in love. I've never known my spots to go down so quickly! It was a blogger favourite, but I'd never really taken much notice of it, that was until I saw it on  Tattooed Tealady, and she gave it a glowing review, so I admit, I was taken in, and I'm very glad that I was. This has become a staple for me, especially when I had very bad breakouts, and angry red blemishes (the worst kind of blemishes really). If you very rarely get blemishes, maybe £15 for a 10ml product may be too much money, but for someone who has oily/combination skin like me, and is prone to the occasional spot or two (or five) then this may be your saviour. I've found that it reduces the size of the spot drastically overnight, and wearing it during the day isn't something i'd suggest, unless you were going makeup free. The gel uses Salicylic Acid to help speed up the 'healing while anti-spot technology helps visibly correct post blemish darkening', whilst Caffeine and Red Algae help to visibly reduce redness of the blemish, and I totally agree with these statements, which can be found here on the Origins website

The gel is very soothing when it first goes on, and I don't know if it's just me, but it does sting a little bit on the blemish, which i'm not sure whether this is because of my sensitive skin, or because i've put too much on? I'll have to double check and write back about this... although I do suspect that it's just me being a little heavy handed (or heavy fingered, if that's a thing). I bought this from Boots (yay for points!) when I went to Cardiff with my best friends, and have used it quite a bit since then, I think it's a wonder product, and would definitely be in my monthly favourites (which i'll post at the end of the month). I love this product and cannot recommend it enough. 

Is this something that you'd try? Or have you tried it before? Let me know what you think (: 


Wednesday, 23 October 2013

La Roche-Posay Serozinc Review

I love this product. What more is there to say? It was held as a blogger must have, and as soon as I saw on of my favourite ladies on Instagram, Rougeout, had purchased these bad boys, I knew I had to have them. I ordered La Roche-Posay's Serozinc from a French/British website called LeGuideSante where they were only £5 or so, per spray can (150ml), which I think is really good for the amount of product that the spray holds. But, let's get into the nitty gritty. I have very oily/combination skin, that is prone to breakouts and imperfections, and this products claims to be made especially for oily skin, with Zinc Sulfate which helps to 'fight against bacterial proliferation', or in english, to stop the increase in oil produced by the skin. It also claims to calm irritations on the skin, which is why it can also be used on babies skin, if it's been irritated by nappy rash.

The spray, is cooling and very soothing, and I use it twice a day when I do my skincare routines, and now that I have a finite skincare routine, I find that this product has really helped clear my skin. Yes, I still have the odd blemish, but this product as well as my other skincare products (which I will talk about in an all about my skincare routine post) have really made a big difference in the texture and appearance of my skin. You don't need a lot of product, just a quick spritz, enough to cover your entire face, I leave it for a few seconds, and then removed with a cotton pad. Even if I think my face is super clean and cleansed, this will always take off that extra extra layer of dirt, which makes a big difference to my skin. This is a holy grail product for me, and I cannot do without it. So much so, I'm going to order more, so that I never run out. I definitely recommend this to those suffering from oily/combination, as not only can it be used as a toner, but can be used to refresh the skin during the day. I think it's a wonder product and it will always be a favourite.

What do you think of Serozinc? Is this something that you'd try? Are spray toners your cup of tea? 


Wednesday, 16 October 2013

Autumn/Winter lipstick #3 - Calvin Klein - Sinful

Hello my lovelies, here is just a little cheeky A/W lipstick post for you, and what better way to continue on, that to introduce a little Calvin Klein wonder. I purchased this wonderful product from Fragrance Direct (ugh, love that site) after stumbling across them, and loving the colour choices. This colour (of the three I chose) is called sinful, and it is a glorious pinky red. As you can see from the above swatch, it does appear to be quite pink, but I'd say it was a pinch more red than that - although  think it would all depend on the lighting in which you find yourself. In natural light, it does appear slightly pinker on me, whereas with the waning light and the artificial lights now on, it does look more red. All, in all, I would say that it's a very wearable shade, that's very comfortable on the lip, and it's full name, 'Calvin Klein Delicious Luxury Creme Lipstick' is exactly what it says it is. It's creamy and definitely feels more expensive that it is, and at £1.99, if you're anything like me, you'll end up buying one or two (or three). 

What do you think of the colour? Is this what you'd call an Autumn/Winter shade? Let me know what you think (:



Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Urban Decay Lipstick Giveaway

Urban Decay
Well, it's happened! I've hit 100 Bloglovin follows and I'm just so excited and happy about it! So I thought i'd give back to my wonderful followers (: and what better to give away than an amazing Urban Decay lipstick? I swatched these up a storm when I was in Debenhams, and I love the texture, so why not celebrate hitting 100 followers with this fabulous lipstick!? The winner will have the wonderful decision of choosing whatever shade he/she wants, so enter away, and fingers crossed for you (: and here's a little link to the colour swatches. Have fun everyone (:

P.S. I'll ship internationally as well, so no need to worry about that (: xx

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, 12 October 2013

The Body Shop Online Haul Edition

Hellooooo honey goodness! I may have gotten a bit excited when the Body Shop was offering a voucher for 40% off online... as you can clearly see. Now, I will say this, the honeymania isn't necessarily honey esc (as in honey from a jar) but more honeysuckle, which was a surprise for me when they first arrived, but not an unpleasant one. It's still a wonderful scent, but for those who might think it to be proper honey, you might be in for a disappointment. I think it's a sweet scent, quite floral, and for those a bit unsure, I'd recommend smelling it in the shop before hand, so you know whether it'd be a good choice for you. Anywho! On with the chat.

The Shea Body Butter is a firm favourite of mine, and even though it's not as heavily scented as other butters, it's still wonderfully moisturising and is a complete go to moisturiser for me, especially in the colder months as my skin tends to dry out very easily. The Camomile cleansing butter was something that I was very excited about, as I'd read numerous reviews on it, and was determined to try it out (and with 40% off, I thought, why not?!) I do plan on doing a proper review of this, so all I will say for now is, for oily/combination skin, it can be quite heavy on the skin, so I'd recommend using a very good toner afterwards to take away all of the product, as although it is moisturising, you don't want it to clog your pores (it was an issue for me) Up next is the Honeymania shower gel which much like the other Body Shop shower gels, is very good on my skin. The scent is floral and clean, and lasts almost all day, which is a strong selling point for me, and the life of it is prolonged when worn with the Honeymania perfume. It's not for everyone (i'd recommend smelling it first) but for me, it really works. I think it's a lovely scent ( i fancy a little perfume review on the blog soon, so watch this space (; ) and last but not least, is this gorgeous lipstick. Raspberry in love is amazing. It's smooth, creamy and such a good colour for a/w, so much so, that I'm thinking of extending my a/w lipstick list to include this one (and my most recent MAC and NARS purchases, of course) I just love it and think it's gorgeous. Once again, watch this space for some upcoming Body Shop reviews.

Thank you so much for reading, my lovelies. Are there any Body Shop products that have caught your eye?



Friday, 11 October 2013

Stargazer Makeup Review

When the lovely Patricia asked me if I wanted to try some Stargazer products, I jumped at the chance! I've always loved the look of Stargazer's products, as it's always been reviewed by other bloggers as having such good pigmentation and long lasting wear, which I am all about! I was sent a small variety of products to try, and I will admit, I am really, really liking them. I love trying out new products, and being introduced to different brands, so this is a review I love love love writing, and I hope that you'll enjoy reading it.

Let's start with the lipsticks. They're very pigmented, which is a very big thing that I look for in a lipstick, as no one wants to layer, layer, layer with lipsticks, as in my experience, they tend to look quite cakey around the lip line, and aren't all that comfortable to wear. But these lipsticks, which I find to be quite moisturising on the lips, are very true to colour from the bullet and last for a good two to three hours before another application is needed, which I think is standard for lipsticks. I was sent two lipsticks, one matte and one regular. The Matte one, is called 208*, and is woody brown, and does not look good on me. Maybe it's the pale skin, dark hair and dark eyebrows, but brown doesn't suit me. It's lovely for those of you who suit brown shades (lucky you!) and is very creamy, and doesn't drag when applying on the lips. The second lipstick in 118*, is gorgeous. It's a dark raspberry colour and I can see it becoming one of my go to a/w lip colours. It's seriously gorgeous, to the point where the swatch doesn't do it enough justice. I'll have to take a picture of it on the lips. Gorgeous!

From top to bottom: Quick Silver Star Pearl eyeshadow*, Pinky is Perki Baked Duo eye shadow*,  Metallic eye shadow pen in Brown*, Lip stick in 118*, Matte lipstick in 208* and Eye Dust in 1*. 

Now onto the eyeshadows! I do like a good eyeshadow, especially if it's in a fun colour with good pigmentation pay off, and these four eyeshadows do the job so well! First is the Star Pearl eyeshadow in Quick Silver* which is pigmented, and gives the dense colour in two applications, so it's not something that's 'bam! silver eyes' in one swoop. I think this is wonderful as it can be built up to give a more intense appearance, or used subtly for a more highlighted approach. My favourite is using it in the inner corners of my eyes to make them appear more awake, and bright eyed. Next is the Baked duo eyeshadow in Pinky is Perki* which is a very fun name for an eyeshadow in my opinion. It's got a lovely shimmer to it, and very good colour pay off, but like most eyeshadows, the fall down under the eye is something to look out for. It's an almost pearly pink, with a shot of shimmer running through it, and it's so soft and weightless on the eye, so I'd say it was perfect for a soft romantic, english rose pink eye. Now we have the Eye Dust*, and by gosh is this pigmented! I've never really been one for eye dusts, as they seem so messy, but the colour pay off is so good, I might be a convert! The closest relative to this product, is perhaps the Barry M Dazzle Dusts, and sometimes I've found the Barry M ones to not be as pigmented as they look, this colour (in 1*) has proved to me that a little goes a long way, and is perhaps just the right product for someone not entirely taken in by the Barry M dusts. The last eye product is the Metallic Eye Shadow stick in Brown*  and I have to admit, I love this. The bronze coppery colour is just my kind of shade, and applies like a dream. It's soft, creamy and well pigmented with a soft shot of shimmer running through it. It's easy to blend and doesn't budge very much over the course of the day. This is a winner from me, and can give more expensive eye products a run for their money. 

Nail Polish in 110* and 512*. 

Last, but not least, are the two nail polishes. The Blue (110*) is a pearlescent polish, in a lovely, dreamy soft blue. I was looking at this the other day and thinking it's the kind of colour a mermaid would have on her toenails... if she had toes... or feet, or legs for that matter. But anyway, it's a very sea foam related colour for me, but I also have the feeling that something like this can be worn in the dead of winter, to contrast red noses, chilled fingers and dark lips. It seems like such a go to winter colour for me, and teamed with the fact that it'll last for a good few days before any noticeable chipping. It took three coats to get the above look, but I found that the formula dried quickly, so it was not much of a wait. The second colour (512*) is a gorgeous pinky red that reminds me of summer (Oh, summer) and looks gorgeous on my toenails (which are currently covered in very thick, wooly socks) It took two coats for a completely opaque appearance, and much like the other colour, it lasts very well.

I've been very impressed with the quality of these products, especially for the price, as they seem to produce products that go above and beyond what you pay. These products have had a very large thumbs up from me (i'm determined to find another use for the matte brown lipstick!) and I hope that you've liked reading my thoughts on Stargazer. Are there any products that have caught your eye? Let me know (:



Thursday, 10 October 2013

Cardiff Haul featuring Mac, Nars, Liz Earle, Origins, Maxfactor, Body Shop.

I don't know if it's just me, but whenever I see a haul post on a blog, in my head I always start singing 'They see me haulin', they hatin'... I have no idea why. Seroiusly. No Idea. But who doesn't love a good haul? I certainly adore them, and they're some of my favourite posts to read (notebook and pen in hand) as I love seeing what people are buying (I'm nosy like that), so I couldn't wait to get this post up for you guys to have a good ol' nose at what I bought in Cardiff when I went with my two Bff's (it was all over my twitter, so you probably know how excited I was). Now, these purchases have been long thought out, and researched, but some haven't and were just bought on a whim (and what a fun whim it was!) So i'll go through them all with you (:

First thing's first; Liz Earle's Eyebright, which I bought from John Lewis as well as the Nars Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Cruella (Cruella De Vil, Cruella De Vil, if she doesn't scare you... no evil thing will!) ... it's seriously been in my head since I bought it, haha. Eyebright was a blog found inspiration (can't remember whose blog it was on :( ) and I instantly jotted it down in my notebook for me to check out, as I'd never had anything from her range before, but i've read very good things about her line, as they always seem very natural and soothing, so that was me sold! Now, Nars was a twitter recommendation (once again, I cannot remember who... should really write these things down) and I was perusing the Nars counter for a good fifteen minutes before deciding on Cruella which is a gorgeous colour, a creamy texture even though it has a matte finish, and it seems to be a slightly less purpley Rimmel 107. I'll have to give it a good few wears to fully have an opinion on it. Watch this space (; 

Next, we'll do the Maxfactor goodies! There was an offer on in Boots (from which I also bought the Origins Super Spot Remover and Limited Edition Vaseline) and I had been very intrigued by the False Lash Effect Mascara in Waterproof (it has to be waterproof for me!) as I'd seen in on numerous blogs, and since Vivianna first introduced me to L'Oreal's Telescopic, I though I would follow her lead, and try this one out. I'll report back with what I find. The Whipped Creme foundation (in Light Ivory 40) was something I'd been looking forward to since it was announced, but decided to use up all my other Maxfactor foundation before springing out for a new one. The coverage is light, and would be perfect for a 'this is my natural skin' kind of look, but since i'm having a bit of a bad skin moment, it's been resigned for the day when my skin get's better (should be any day now). The Origins Super Spot Remover was a Tattooed Tea Lady find, and anything that can reduce my blemishes is a win for me! I've been using it for a few days now, and I think it's amazing. Truly a miracle product! It reduces blemishes overnight, and are gone much quicker than if left naturally. Loving this! The Vaseline was something I stumbled upon whilst wandering around Boots (as you do) and it immediately went in my basket. Vaseline is always an essential for me, for cold weather, as it acts as a barrier between my lips and the certain chilliness which was most certainly chap them. For an outing, I would slick on some lip balm, and put this on top, just so my lips don't lose that essential moisture during Autumn/Winter. 

Now onto the Mac (you've been waiting for this, haven't you?) I bought Diva lipstick, Burgandy lipliner and Vintage Selection paint pot. The paint pot was under the recommendation of Gemma, who was dealing with my Mac noobness (never been there before... shame on me!) as she gave me numerous paint pot recommendations, and under some perusing I decided that Vintage Selection was the one for me! It's gorgeous, and it doesn't move. Seriously. I swatched it on my hand in Debenhams (Thank you Ms Lucy for the Mac in Debenhams recommendation, as they were so lovely and so helpful!) and it didn't come off for ages. It's a champagne, rose gold glittery perfection of a colour, and i'm so glad that I was told about it! There's something very familiar about Diva, as it's a burgundy red, and it's so nice to wear on the lips, especially when combined with the Burgandy lipliner. It's a match made in heaven. I will report back with more knowledge on these Mac purchases (:

Now it's all about the Body Shop and Paperchase! In the Body Shop, I went a bit Chocomania mad (it just smells so good!) because as soon as I smelt it, I was actually salivating, and knew that I had to have it! So I purchased the Body Butter and the Shower Gel, and I can't stop smelling them both. So good! And who doesn't want to smell like a mango? I ask you, who honestly doesn't? So I bought the shower gel in Mango as well. I'm going to be smelling so good, I may be tempted into self cannibalism... only joking! Hahahaha. Paperchase is a fabulous place. It's all notebooks and stationary, and I do love stationary. So I bought a blogging notebook, one exclusively for my blogging, so I wanted something bright and cheerful, bound and with narrow lines. This one wasn't narrow ruled, but it ticked all of the other boxes, and that's good for me. I also purchased some Sticky Note bookmarks, as if you're anything like me, you have dozens of bookmarks but can never find any when you start a new book, so this was a genius purchase (:

So this was my Cardiff Haul! I hope that you liked it, and maybe even spotted a few products that you'd like to see more on (: Just let me know, though expect some in depth makeup reviews once they're all road tested. Thank you for reading.



Monday, 7 October 2013

Autumn/Winter lipstick #2 - Collection - Queen of Hearts

Now this is red. Bright, bright red. Bright, in your face, try not to look at my lips kind of red. I would never have dreamed of rocking this look a year ago, but i'm really glad that I am now. Although, i'm still a bit hesitant about wearing it in the day... maybe i'll work up the courage and do it (:

Anywho, let's talk about this lipstick. It's gorgeous. It's creamy and I find that with most Collection lipsticks, they tend to go on very well, and don't dry out the lips, which is always a good thing by me. It kind of reminds me of the bright red a person would wear if they wanted to add an instant pop of colour to an outfit, as yes, other reds would do the same, but this would, in my opinion give a wow factor, as a deeper red may give off a more classic look. I suppose this is an almost pinky red, in a way, as opposed to the deeper, darker more blue reds which I usually fancy, and tend to suit me better. But this against my pale skin is really lovely, and I can imagine it looking rather gorgeous on all skin tones, as no doubt it would brighten up anyones features. For a longer lasting finish,iI'd use a lipliner as well, and maybe as well to get the shape of your lips before applying this, as it's so creamy, it went everywhere when I first applied it (far too excited) but since then, with a steadier hand and a bit of lipliner, it's all red-lips-a-go-go around here (which is actually really nice. who knew a red lip could make my day brighter?) It's the brightest lipstick of my chosen bunch, but by damn is it lovely.

What do you think of Collection lipsticks? Are you a fan? Would you consider a red as bright as this one? 


Friday, 4 October 2013

Autumn/Winter lipstick #1 - Kate Moss for Rimmel - 107

This is such a blogger staple, and I've read numerous reviews upon it, so I thought, why not throw in my thoughts? Kate Moss' line of lipsticks for Rimmel is gorgeous. End of discussion. 

.. Haha, I've got a lot more to say than that (; 107 is an essential A/W shade for me. I think it's wearable, day or night, and can be taken from day to night with very minimal changes to my makeup, which is always a plus for me if I want to go out for a drink with the girls after work. It's been a heavy hitter in September for me, even earning a spot in my monthly favourites and boy do I love it! It's a gorgeous burgundy colour that's so pigmented and soft on the lips, and maybe it's just me, but it smells so darn amazing that whenever I put it on, and I make everyone around me smell it (yes it is weird, but I love the smell that much!) I'm a very big fan of Rimmel lipsticks, especially the Kate Moss range, as I might just own every single of hers -  but who can blame me? I'm a sucker for a good colour and a long lasting finish, and this is a definite combination of both.

For Autumn/Winter make up in the day, I would usually pare this with a subtle flick of eyeliner and maybe some contouring in the crease of my eye with a soft taupe colour (MUA's Undress me too palette is really good) and a pinch of soft rosey pink on the apples of my cheeks (i'm so pale, I am always in need of blusher, as otherwise I just look ill) but for night, I'll add some contouring to my cheekbones, and darken the eye makeup, making the crease heavier and the eyeliner thicker and more dramatic. If i'm going for a proper night out, then i'll vamp up my eyelashes using some individual fake eyelashes (which are very hard to apply until you get the hang of it... still not sure if I have...) and voila!  The lips don't need to be touched, unless you're topping up the coverage.

What do you think of 107? Is it a go to colour for your a/w?


Thursday, 3 October 2013

A bit of something personal: Grief

I contemplated adding a picture to this post, as, it's about grief and heartbreak... who wants to see a soppy inspirational picture that is trying to make you feel better? I thought and thought about it, and it turns out... I do. I want to see soppy, inspirational pictures, because by damn, I want to feel better. So *raises hand* I, Rebecca, want to feel better. (turns out I couldn't find the one that I wanted, so I'm using something from a visit to the National Botanical Gardens, isn't that ironic? haha) I don't want the numbness, loneliness and darkness to last. I don't want those things anymore (does anyone really want them? I think they're just assigned to you when something terrible happens) So... on with the show, then?

I'll start with my grandparents. My grandmother died last September. She was in and out of hospital, but nonetheless, it was a shock. She'd broken her hip after visiting my grandfather in hospital, and then a few months later, she died. Last month (August) my grandfather died. He'd been in and out of hospital, but once again, it was a shock. He'd developed pneumonia for the third time, but there was that hope that he'd be well again, that he'd pull through it. He hadn't long celebrated his 81st birthday, and looking back on it now, it makes you realise how much you regret. How I wish I had been there more. How I wish I done more, so maybe, maybe, he would have gotten better. But grief is a slippery slope. Once you start blaming yourself... it's hard to come back from it. My friends helped me through it, and I suppose it still hasn't sunk in properly. I still read things that he would want to know about, and I hear jokes that would make him laugh. Grief... grief hits you when you least expect it.

My boyfriend and I, or ex-boyfriend, had been together for almost four years. We met in University, and we spent almost everyday of term time together, so I could say, he was University for me. He introduced me to my best friend, and friendships that I have held so dearly over the past few years. But we broke up. Every holiday from University was spent apart, and it was almost as if we'd become accustomed to a long distance relationship (three hours apart, which may not sound like much, but it certainly feels it) We lived together in our third year of Uni, and when time came for it to end, so did we. We broke up, and parted ways, and I have never felt so much pain and upset in my life. I cried for weeks and weeks.

With me, I would look fine. I would smile and laugh, and go about, day to day, as I would have done before. But at night... which I think is the loneliest i've ever felt, the grief and the pain, and everything I ever concealed just erupted. I can't tell you how many nights I cried myself to sleep, or sent blurry eyed text messages to my best friend, detailed how heartbroken I was (she also lives three hours away. ironically, she lives about ten minutes away from my ex) I suppose it's a cliche to say that there are plenty more fish in the sea, or you'll survive - but it's true, even though it definitely didn't feel like it at the time, and still doesn't. 

A few weeks after we'd broken up the first time, he phoned me, saying that he missed me and wanted me back. After crying on the phone to my best friend for an hour or so, I talked to my ex and we decided to get back together. I was happy again, even though I still felt so hurt about what had happened. So, we celebrated our three year anniversary and things went back to how they were, except now, we both had jobs, which was a step in the right direction. So, we talked and talked, I'd go and visit him once a month (all I could afford with my part time retail work) and we planned that I would look for a job up with him and we'd live together. This went on for months, and it turns out, looking for a job is easy, getting one is the tricky part. Suffice it to say, I didn't get one. 

We celebrated his birthday and mine, and he helped me (through the phone) when my grandfather died.  But when I went to see him, the weekend before the funeral, even though he was comforting, I would cry and get hugs from my best friend, he would just sit there, tapping away on his laptop, to the point where I was getting more affection from my best friend's boyfriend than from my own. I was so upset when my grandfather died, because even though I was having a very hard time with it, my Dad, was broken by it. My grandmother and grandfather, were both his parents, and to lose them both in a space of 18 months took a very harsh toll on him. 

I look back now and I wonder what made me more upset, being apart from my best friend and boyfriend, or seeing my dad, his face so full of pain. I'd never seen my dad cry before my grandmother died, and to see it again, so soon, broke my heart all over again. Grief is something that I was not accustomed to, and I suppose I was very fortunate to have both grandparents for so long, but losing them, especially my grandfather, who I cherished so so much, is so heart wrenching. I told my boyfriend, that in my grief, I had stopped looking for a job up with him, it was something that he did not take well to, and from then on, was quite distant. My family was so broken by this sudden death, that we didn't know what to do with ourselves, especially my dad, who would spend his evenings before work (he works night shifts) with my grandfather, keeping him company. Filling those evenings with something that my dad wanted to do was difficult, so I tried to remain as happy and positive as I could. But there comes a time when being so positive and upbeat for everyone else, comes crashing down. I didn't cry when my boyfriend and I broke up, it was only the day after, in work that I broke down on the shop floor.

I'm not generally someone who cries in front of other people, and I'm usually the happy, positive one in work, so to see me crying was I think, quite a shock for the people I worked with. Like I said, grief hits you in unexpected times, and it hits you hard if you don't deal with it. I obviously didn't. I wanted to write something about how to deal with grief... as if I had all the answers, and to help others going through the same thing. But I don't have all the answers, and I don't know how to make others feel better, other than saying, you are not alone in your grief. There is always someone that you can talk to. I will be here (only an email, tweet or a comment away) if you need to talk. Grief is one of the things that even though I've written all of this, I can't fully explain it. It just feels like something is missing. So, don't be afraid to cry, or talk to someone. I will always be here if you need to talk about your grief. 

I felt very nervous about writing this post, and it has been a work in progress for quite some weeks. I think talking about something so personal is quite tricky, but I thought, if I help one person attempt to deal with their grief, then i've done the right thing. So here we are. Thank you so much for reading.

Rebecca xx

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

September Favourites

Hello you fabulous people, here are my September favourites and a new photograph composition, I hope that you like both! So, here we go (:

First we have The Body Shop's Vineyard Peach body butter. Now i'm all for smelling like a peach (a like I didn't realise that I had before I tried this) but this body butter is exactly like all the others, and by that, I mean amazing. They're so moisturising and soft on my skin, but the smell (did I mention that it's peach? PEACH!) is gorgeous, and it smells like a peach tree. Ugh, so good.

Stila's convertible colour dual lip and cheek cream in Lillium is lovely. It's a gorgeous colour, and you only need a little dab onto your cheeks, before blending it out (I use a stippling brush to do so) and it gives such a gorgeous flush of colour that lasts all day with very minimal wear (I would give it about 30 seconds to set before applying a loose powder on top) This is the only Stila colour that I own, but it's so beautiful, and the consistency is so good, I'm definitely considering buying another. 

Now this is a product i've mentioned many times before (you're probably sick of me talking about it) but it's Soap & Glory's 'One heck of a blot'. Oh my goodness, I am in love. I take it everywhere with me. I'm serious. If i'm going out, it's in every bag and usually whipped out to check out my shine situation (it's something i've learnt to do over the years) and usually, I only need a slightly dab of the mattifying powder to make my skin look ready for anything. 

107 by Kate Moss' range for Rimmel is something of a holy grail product for Beauty Bloggers come Autumn/Winter and i've only worn this a handful of times during the month, but I love it. I've worn it in the day for coffee with friends (teamed with a simple flick of eyeliner and flushed cheeks), and then for a night out (with a smoked out eye, a thick cat eye eyeliner and contoured cheeks) and it's been tried and tested, this is a winner of a lipstick. 

The eyeliner in question is Rimmel's Scandaleyes precision micro eyeliner with the thinnest nib, as I find that it can get right in the corner of my eye, and give the most defined look. With creamy eyeshadows, this will not last and it will transfer (and if you have oily eyelids like myself, a little bit of transfer is inevitable) but I find that with powder eyeshadows, this last all day, or all night. It's very black and although it does sometimes drag across the eyelid, I find that it does the job.

The only mascara that ever works, and I mean ever, is L'Oreal's telescopic waterproof mascara, and that combined with my Shu Uemura eyelash curlers, is a winning team. I do actually need a new tube of this mascara, but can I find it anywhere? Nope. I am determined though. Bring it on Cardiff Boots, I will find this mascara. 

Maybelline's Eraser eye is glorious. It is YSL's Touche Eclat but without the price tag. It illuminates, conceals and just brightens my life. It's not a heavy duty concealer, as I use my Barbara Daly one for that, but this is for under eye usage and wherever I need a bit of illumination. It's gorgeous, and a permanent edition to my makeup bag. 

Now for my only haircare love this month, as as much as I love the John Frieda Shampoo and Conditioner (which I love so so much, did you see my rave review?) but for me, it's the Full Repair oil elixir that is the star of the shower. It's amazing, so much so, you only need one of two pumps, and it just makes my hair feel so good. It makes it soft, smooth and it actually dries a lot quicker than without anything on it. 

My only non makeup/skincare item, and that's a room spray. It's gorgeous. It's citrus, sweet, floral and fruity, it makes my room smell gorgeous, regardless of the time of year, but I find that this is especially good in Spring/Summer, as for Autumn/Winter I prefer something a bit spicier, and more musky (any recommendations?)

So this has been my September Favourites post, and I'd love to know what you think. What products are you loving this month? Anything in my list that has caught your eye?

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