Sunday, 31 May 2015

May Favourites + UPDATE

Hello all! So May has come to a close and I've had quite a month, I've picked up favourites here and there but I've also stopped using a few things too so I'm going to be going through that too. I also wanted to take this opportunity to go through my month and give you all an update.

I've been to see S Club 7 at the Metro Radio Arena, I've paid a visit to London and I've had a weekend in Yorkshire. Throughout all of that I've decided that I want to try and go back to being a bit more lifestyle based. Of course, I still want to post about fashion and beauty but I'm just saying that I want to try and post more about my life and what I get up to. I've booked up for a holiday with my family in Majorca at the end of July so August will be full of fun travel posts - if I get 'round to it!

After Aprils's hair transformation I've struggled with colouring and tones for makeup. Subsequently, I've taken to light shimmery pinks and nude shades. In terms of favourites I just wanted to mention the Makeup Revolution Ultimate Eyeshadow Collection yet again, It's given me the chance to experiment and choose subtle shades to contrast with the more nude tones I've taken to. 

On to health and beauty favourites, we'll go from left to right in terms of the image. The Gillette Venus & Olay 5 blade razor was on special in Superdrug so I couldn't resist it, I bought two and I've loved it. I've always been self-conscious about my legs so a product that smooths my legs as well as removing hair? Sold. The next product is the Sure Invisible Deodorant, it doesn't leave white marks on clothing and it makes me feel fresh all day. As for the Vitamin E cleanser from Superdrug, I've had a bad skin month so this product has really helped my skin along the later side of the month. It's sort of revitalised it and made me feel much better about my skin. The final item of my health and beauty favourites is the Batiste Tropical Dry Shampoo, lighter hair means more colour care so I've cut down on how much I've washed my hair. The tropical smell is a great feature, it just adds to that refreshing boost that Batiste usually gives. 

Going back to the cleanser, if anyone who has read any of my previous favourites posts remembers correctly, I had been using the Soap & Glory 2 in 1 Cleanser which was great but it just didn't work quite as well on my skin as it should. I love the fruity scent that it had and it wasn't oily but it just didn't cleanse my skin in the way that suits my skin in general. 

The sun is finally coming out and I've had to put away my jumpers and start to wear lighter tops. The one on the left was from Primark and I utterly adore it, it's bright and it's very airy. The back sort of open and looks cut up so it keeps me cool and shows some skin without too much on view. Also, 'Mermaid Have More Fun' is a fab slogan for a top. I'll probably keep it safe for my holiday later in the year now because it will look great with the maxi skirt I bought last year. Primark usually do fab Summer wear so I'll be paying another visit in the near future to restock for my holiday. 

The last thing I want to talk about is some of the new music that's been out and on the radio recently. I've been going through a bit of a phase in terms of music for the past 6ish months and I've limited myself to listening to My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy and Panic! At The Disco so these picks are quite a shock to the system. I've been loving Little Mix's new song Black magic and their video is fantastic, it's fun and they've stayed true to their core sound so I'm fairly pleased with it. I've also been kind of obsessed with Carly Rae Jepsen's new song I Really Like You, it's catchy and the video is pretty awesome too - A day in the life of Tom Hanks? Thanks Carly! Last but not least is Taylor Swift's new song Bad Blood has an AMAZING video and the song is damn good too.

Thanks for reading my latest favourites post, I plan on blogging quite a bit this week so look out for new posts throughout the week. 

Tuesday, 26 May 2015

A Weekend In Yorkshire: Bridlington Vintage Fair

Since it was the bank holiday weekend I went to Yorkshire with my family for a little caravan getaway. We stayed at the Park Resorts holiday park in Barmston, a quaint little village with next to nothing in it. It was a fairly nice place to stay, we've been there for a weekend once before though I couldn't remember ever going until I got there and recognised the place. 

Anyway, since it was a quiet village we decided to venture out into Bridlington where we (my dad, my brother and I) found out that it was the day of a vintage fair. It was fantastic and they sold some fantastic items but to be honest, it was really a glorified boot sale. Not that I'm complaining, I love a good mooch around a boot sale and it was nice to see the 50's theme scattered around the hall.

Outside stood a number of vintage cars, many of which were rusting and not so well looked after but there was a few that looked nearly brand new. It was quite a range though the car to the right stood out for me because it was a sportier and sleeker model than the rest on show. Of course, there was a number of motorcycles too but I couldn't get close enough to them to get a decent picture. They seemed more popular than the cars as more people seemed to want their photographs by the motorcycles than they did by the cars. 

There was also a face painter and bubble machine outside, which my sister would have loved but she opted to stay with my mum on the caravan site. I do think she would have gotten bored in the hall used to hold the fair though so maybe it was for the best that she stayed behind. 

It was clear that the people of Bridlington put a lot of effort into the whole look of the fair, the entrance to the hall was signed with crochet bunting with the words Advintageous Vintage Fairs which I thought was a lovely touch. Plus, the people running the event were dressed up in  clothes that mimicked 40s/50s style.

It cost something like £2.50 to get in as an adult but it was worth it to see some of the stuff in there, I'm fairly sure I saw some first edition classics. Also, as someone with a turntable I quite enjoyed looking through all the vinyl on sale, I saw a lot of Bowie in there. The prices weren't ridiculous, they seemed about right for the albums available. I some of The Beatles albums there too which, depending on the album and the place you buy them from, can be quite expensive but I saw some for about £20.

As previously mentioned when talking about the people running the event, 40s/50s style was very much present. Plenty of it was on sale, too. The bright colours and bold patterns were eye catching and incredibly stylish. They certainly caught my eye, though I couldn't justify spending money on a dress I wouldn't have the chance to wear. 

The picture to the right shows the music note dress that I particularly loved at the fair, I just wish I had an event coming up that I could wear it for. It's a lot to spend on a dress that is only going to sit at the back of my wardrobe.

So, yeah. I enjoyed my little break in Yorkshire, we didn't get a chance to visit Whitby (my all time favourite place in the country) but we kept ourselves busy. We explored Filey and Bridlington quite extensively really, we like to walk around and explore when we're away so we tend to discover all sorts of hidden gems. Thanks for reading my latest lifestyle post, it was a pleasure writing it for you. I hope your post bank holiday blues are fading away!

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Celebrity Inspired Wishlist Overview: Part 2

(The first part of my series overview can be found hereI'm just going to go through another quick introduction before I dive straight back into this, think of it as a similar method to the "previously on..." bit at the beginning of a tv show. So I'm running through my celebrity inspired wishlist series in two parts, this being the second, I'm enjoying looking back on the project and I hope you are too. I love doing overviews and compilations of posts to give me a feel for the sort of quality I try to get across in each post, I'm currently trying to think of another series I can start in the near future. Anyway...

My Taylor Swift Inspired Wishlist was slightly more reserved than the two wishlists prior to it, in a way it was a more youthful strain of the same style as Mollie King. They are both quite natural in terms of complexion and tend to go for fresh and glowing looks, Taylor however, is more inclined to go with a statement lip depending on the look she is going for. Red has sort of become her look, I know a lot of celebs go for a bold red lippy but Taylor has really coveted it and she's often connected to that trend. Her hair is very relaxed but by no means effortless, it's styled with very soft loose curls and pinned back by a clip or something of that general idea. As for fashion, I picked out a dress similar to the one in the image to the left only it's cheaper than what she's likely to have paid. The other items are much more casual yet still classy and done up. 

The next post of the series (found here) was created very much with the festival season in mind, Vanessa Hudgens is the queen of boho festival style. Bronzed, healthy looking and bold is how I would describe Vanessa's overall makeup look. From what I've seen, I think that she tends to experiment quite a bit with both her hair and makeup. Whatever she decides to do, it's always wonderfully coordinated with her outfit. I focused on the festival season because that's really when Vanessa seems to shine in the fashion world. No one does boho like Vanessa does boho, full stop. She just naturally compliments the style. Even in the look to the right you can identify an essence of her style theme, that's why I delighted in creating a wishlist inspired by her. It's not quite as easy to recreate as some of the others, I say that because I had a specific vision for this wishlist, I didn't want just any old rubbish added in. 

Next up was the glamorous Emma Stone, I have done both an inspired wishlist and an inspired makeup look though the latter of the two was not part of the series. I enjoyed creating Emma's look because it's very minimal and classic whilst still complimenting her features and hair colour. I mentioned quite fondly her amber hue as I love that colour on myself and I remembered how I used to do my hair, makeup and style when I had it. Despite the image to the left, I actually did a more comfy and casual Emma Stone inspired wishlist. I chose to do it that way for the simple fact that I wanted to build something up that could be useful for everyday use. All of the items mentioned are investment pieces that should be in every girls basic wardrobe, they are easily styled and can be used for those awkward rushed mornings and unplanned outings. It's just a style that anyone could pull off so I offered tips and advice on how to buy flattering clothing that mimics the style in the right way for your shape.

Last but certainly not least was my Katy Perry Inspired Wishlist, it was the last in the series, not intentionally as I just sort of dropped off the series but all in all it was a fab finishing piece. It was the most bold, bright and eclectic wishlist of the whole series and I thoroughly adored every single piece I picked up despite it not being my usual style. It was another post that got a hair dye advice snippet as I loved the lilac shade in the image I was inspired by. It just looks so pretty and compliments her skin tone beautifully, if I wasn't so attached to my own hairs pre-lightened state it would be my next hair dye move... We'll see! Anyway, I feel like the purple really helped tie in with the rest of the pieces as they were so vibrant and different, Katy has been known to stand out in a crowd with her mad sense of style. As I said in the post, it's not quite as mad as Lady Gaga's sense of style but it's still fairly out there and bold which is certainly not a bad thing. 

Thanks for reading part two, I hope both parts of the post have interested anyone reading my blog as I've enjoyed my blogging nostalgia. I'd love it if you could visit some of the mentioned posts, you never know, you may find something you like enough to invest in. 

Celebrity Inspired Wishlist Overview: Part 1

Hello! I've been wanting to type this post up for a while now and I just never seem to get a chance to put it together. Not so long back I started a blogging series about beauty and fashion looks based on notably fashionable celebrities. I enjoyed the whole project but, as most things do, it had to come to an end as I just didn't have the time to type one up every week. At the time I was doing about three drafts of each post to make sure I was happy with each one and I put a lot of thought into them so it just became too much on top of my usual workload. Anyway, this project overview is going to be in two separate parts to make it lighter reading. In total I typed up nine posts in the series so I'm going to be talking about the first five in this post and the remaining four in the next one.

The first post of the series was inspired by Perrie Edwards, it was easy to create because Perrie generally has a boho chic vibe and I was able to pick items and methods that appealed to me and matched her sense of style. You can find the post here if you'd like to check it out, it was the post with the most views and interactions and, to be honest, it was probably in my top three. For hair I took inspiration from the pic to the left and described how I would personally create the look, I found it to be quite a casual yet glamorous look. In terms of makeup, I focused on the lips as it seems to be one of her favourite looks judging on how many times she's mimicked it. If I was to go back and do the project again I would probably focus a little more on the hair and makeup as it would make a fantastic tutorial. I'm fairly sure that a similar post would generate quite a positive response so it's something I'll definitely think about in the future.

Next up was my Kylie Jenner inspired wishlist which you can view here, yet again, I focused on her lip look because her stand out feature is her pout. I didn't mention hair but really you could just add dry shampoo to straightened second day hair and tease the top layer a little. I loved choosing items to mimic her wardrobe as it's very simplistic yet classy which is something to strive for when putting together a cute outfit. I adore Kylie's sense of style, I got to choose some items that would really work for both her shape and mine as her shape is similar to mine only hers is slimmer. The pieces I chose were investment pieces that could be matched with many other pieces to create different looks, I mentioned alternatives withing the post for those of you who want to dress it up or down. 

The third post of the series was inspired by the gorgeous Mollie King (here), I chose her style because I love the adorable neutral looks that she seems to sway towards. I think as far as celebs go, she's on the top of the scale when it come to her look as it's incredibly understated and versatile. I created her inspired wishlist by observing her style on a whole, her skin always looks dewy and healthy whilst she tends to go for a lovely tousled wave when it comes to her hair style. Her fashion sense is on a whole other level, she is always on trend and she never really has any fashion faux pas. I focused on pastel shades and tanned leathers and I found some beautiful pieces that would compliment her dainty figure and chic sense of style. Just as I did with the previous two, I offered alternative ways to wear the items I suggested and I feel like the post really benefited from that. 

The next celebrity inspired wishlist was a game changer for this series, it was much different to anything I had done before and I really enjoyed finding pieces to match the style. Hayley Williams, princess of alternative music, was a fun subject to mimic the style of. You can read the wishlist here, I hope you enjoy it too because I enjoyed putting it together. Her look is very much like her music, different and a touch on the grungy style. By grungy I most certainly DO NOT mean dirty or grimey, I mean it in the comfortable edgy way. To create her hairstyle I offered advice for those, just like Hayley, who have fine and naturally straight hair and mentioned products and methods that would enhance any natural texture. Hayley is well known for her, at times, whacky hair. She changes it up often and knows exactly what makeup compliments each colour she goes. I got to experiment with this post as I chose bright eyeliner which, at the time, was very big on the beauty and fashion scene. 

The last featured wishlist of this post is my Jesy Nelson inspired one (here), which I decided to create after the success of the Perrie Edwards inspired one. This wishlist was verging on the side of the goths as she has quite a dark sense of style, I loved putting it together because it was subtly done. Her hair played quite a big part in this wishlist as it's her main feature that she's always focused on since her days on the X Factor. I also really put a lot of effort into going through her staple makeup look as I love the way she enhances her features with makeup. I was really pleased with my decision to create a wishlist inspired by Jesy's style, it was very much like my own in a way because I love to dress dark, I love bug hair and I'm a sucker for bold eyelashes. I have to admit though, I haven't been able to wear those styles as often since I dyed my hair light because it just makes me look paler than I already am. 

Well, thanks for reading part one of my overview, it's been fun to look back on the series and I can't wait to post the second half. 

Thursday, 14 May 2015

There And Back Again: London Part 2 (Throwback Thursday)

This post has been in the pipeline for quite some time and since I was blogging about my most recent trip this morning I just decided to do them both in a two part London-lovefest. I decided to do the throwback half of the post second because I didn't have the images with me when I wrote part one.

My last trip to London was before I was employed so it really was just a fun little trip with no expectations or obligations. There has been multiple setbacks for a post about this specific trip back in... January? February? Either way I just haven't been able to get it typed up so I'm glad that I'm getting to post about it now before the lead goes stale. I was originally going because I wanted to go back to London but then AJ's boyfriend found out he was going to a stag do and we found out that Sherlock was going to be filming it just all really came together.

As I have every time I've stayed with AJ, I've arrived at Kings Cross around the 7pm mark so she could meet up with me after work. We cooked dinner and spent the evening watching Green Wing and Black books, I don't think she expected me to take to them so much because I watched one episode after the other after that.

The next morning AJ and I met Charlie just around the corner from where the cast of Sherlock were filming the special. Once we'd been there for a while we picked up the general pattern of the scene and it wasn't long before they broke up for lunch, Benedict's car was right next to us so we were pretty close. We also saw Martin, Steven and Mark so we had quite a few fangirl moments.

She'll kill me for mentioning this but a certain person under five foot had to stand on the railings to see what was going on. It was quite an experience because everything was all done up to look like Victorian London, horses and carts were on a loop around the street and a snow machine was fully operational. Some of the houses were decorated as shops, apothecaries and the like to set the scene.

Once Benedict left we had lunch in a... Scandinavian restaurant though we nearly had lunch somewhere that was formerly a toilet, which would have been weird, but it was too full and there was no room for us three to sit down which is how we ended up at the Scandinavian.

We then made our way to Soho where we found various vintage shops and stopped at a vinyl store. The image to the right is of Charlie and I searching for vinyls, I picked out Seven Wonders by Fleetwood Mac and I can't quite remember what she picked up.

Once Charlie left us to pack for Prague, we made our way to Forbidden Planet so AJ could find a Valentines Day present for Gary, she bought the Zelda edition of Monopoly. Once we had gotten out of the very busy shop we ended up playing tourists as we walked by Shakespeare's Globe Theatre and various other little gems. If I remember correctly we ended up in Starbucks and later on we had a cold drink in a pub on the Bankside. Overall it was an incredibly fun trip, though we did end up having a lazy day on my last day there because AJ had a bad back and I had blisters and sore muscles from all of the walking.

Thank you for reading part two of this post, also, credit to AJ for her photography! My next proper lifestyle post will most likely be about the Bank Holiday weekend because I'm going to Yorkshire with my family. 

There And Back Again: London Part 1

As promised I'm writing up some more lifestyle posts, though, to be honest I've got plenty to write about anyway so I'm more than happy to get some more writing practice in. So the way this is going to work is that the post is split into two, the first part (this one) is about my most recent trip to London and the second part will be a throwback to the time before that. 

So on Sunday I set off for London, yet again, to stay with AJ. I'm much more used to using trains as a mode of transport than I was last year in December when I first went to stay with her. It was my first time on a train and the furthest I had travelled alone, I was fairly anxious about it at the time but now I just get settled and deal with the hours sat next to a stranger. I usually get the train from Durham to Kings Cross though if I wanted to I could get the Darlington train, it's the same train anyway, just at different stops. I think that on Sunday we were all a bit out of it, AJ and Gary had just driven up from Scotland after a home visit and I had been on the train for hours. AJ still managed to cook food for us as I lurked about in the kitchen chatting to her, we had chickpea curry which was, of course, yummy. 

On Monday I stuck to the Kings Cross area to do some networking with other bloggers etc, it was nice to see some other perspectives. We chatted about blogging personas, analytics, domains and quite a range of other topics so I really appreciated the advice and idea sharing. We had breakfast together whilst at an open morning so we really had a chance to chat and figure out who was from where and what background we each had. It was quite a range from journalism, marketing and things a little further afield so we all had very different views. The meal AJ cooked that night was risotto which she said went wrong but it tasted great, I attempted to cook risotto ages ago when we had our Skype Cooking Lessons but mine went wrong. I'll get it right one day! 

I spent my free day (well, half because I set off for Durham at half on) on Tuesday just dotting around and discovering various little gems, I did some networking and bought a plain grey skirt and a pair of black tights in H&M after a wardrobe malfunction. It happens just about every time I go down there, I guess I just need to take more of a variation of clothes next time. Either way it just gave me a chance to browse the Angel Central which apparently used to be called the N1 Shopping Center. I took advantage of whatever free wifi my phone connected to and enjoyed the southern sun, it was fantastic! One thing I will say though is that the pretzels from the mini shop in the middle of the square smelled beautiful and I constantly felt hungry. I always find my way to this sort of area in London because AJ works close by so if I get lost I have a point of reference. 

My next port of call was La Petite Village, it's the most adorable little French café and it was recommended to me for whilst I was wandering around. The owner has a lot of time for his customers, he's very friendly and he tries to make anyone who goes in feel welcome. I ordered a large cappuccino and a pain au chocolate pastry as a sort of breakfast as I set away on the internet. I can't remember whether the café had its own internet or I connected to something else but I somehow managed it. 

I think it was the last place I visited before going back to Kings Cross to wait for my train. I was sad to leave London, as I always am, though I'll end up returning soon enough. I'm prone to booking random train tickets now and I don't think it's a pattern that will go away in the near future. 

Thanks for reading part one, the second part will be up tonight when I have my home laptop to get the images from earlier in the year. 

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Emma Stone Inspired Makeup

Hello everyone, this post is my latest collaboration with Nicola DaRita (Perfect Peonies) which we have been looking forward to since our last one. The premise for this collaboration was that we both wanted to create Emma Stone inspired looks, we chatted for quite some time about the subtlety and glamour of her staple look. Emma Stone is quite often my style inspiration as well as my makeup inspiration, not long ago I posted an Emma Stone Inspired Wishlist

I chose the look to the left to contrast with Nicola's bronzed look as my skin is much paler and I wanted to create a fresh glowy look. I've always tried to stick with peachy pink tones to add colour to my face rather than browns and bronzes. It's just the easier option and to be honest, I love the Maybelline NY Dream Soft Blush Peach.

To create this look:

After cleansing, moisturising and priming with my usual products I dotted the Rimmel London Wake Me Up foundation around my face and patted it in as I would with concealer, it's brightening and fairly dewy to create Emma's fresh-faced look. I then applied concealer to cover up my little spot breakup around my mouth, I used the Collection Lasting Finish Concealer as it's durable and easy to blend. Before applying the setting powder I applied the Maybelline NY Dream Soft Blush in Peach to the apples of my cheeks, I like to blend it in by softly patting my cheeks. I know, it sounds like a lot of patting but I just find that it's the most effective way of blend mid to light coverage makeup. The setting powder I used was the Matte Maker in Classic Ivory as it balances out the slightly oily look that the other products later take on without something to set it.

As for the eyes, I didn't use eyeliner as I felt that it would make the look too bold and dramatic. Instead I opted to use the Maybelline Colour Tattoo Eyeshadow in Permanent Taupe, I applied it with a thin makeup brush all over my lid and slightly lined halfway under my eyes. Since Emma's look is very metallic, smokey and glamorous I decided to layer it with the Maybelline Color Show Mono Eyeshadow in Copper Fizz, it enhanced my eyes and gave it a slight shimmer. The eye look was very experimental, it turned out really well though so I'm happy. I used the Rimmel London Exaggerate mascara to lengthen my eyelashes and make the look more glamorous.

To create the lip look I used the MUA Luxe Velvet Lip Lacquer in the shade 'Funk' along with the Collection Lock n Hold Lip Gloss Break in the shade 'Dance', the mixture of the two mimics Emma's look fairly well. 

There Ain't No Party Like An S Club Party: Bring It All Back Tour

Anyone who belongs to the same generation as me (in the UK, anyway) will remember the standard playlist for school discos, they usually consisted of the most random upbeat songs and bands. One that always stood out though was S Club 7, they had many a song played through chunky old speakers. It because of this that I decided to go see their reunion tour with my friend, Leanne. The image to the left isn't of a great quality but to be fair, I used the front camera of my Samsung phone and it's not always reliable in darker lighting.

Most of the audience seemed to be young women but there were a few men dotted about so it really felt like a ladies night out. I would say that S Club 7 are a bit of a guilty pleasure, they just remind me of being back in primary school which isn't a bad thing. I guess I wanted to see them for the same reason I went to see McBusted (see post here), nostalgia is always a great feeling when we're so busy with our careers and lives. Unlike my experience with the McBusted tour, I didn't check the setlist beforehand so it was pretty much a surprise though not really because they performed their most loved hits. I may be getting ahead of myself though because I haven't even mentioned the support act yet

The image to the right is of the arena as it started to fill up, the Metro Radio Arena is definitely one of the smaller venues but it really just means that there are no 'bad' seats. So concert kicked off with their support act, AJ Lehrman and a DJ playing his backing track. He wasn't really anything to get excited about, I mean, he wasn't bad but I'm not rushing out to get his latest track (Unbelievable). He wasn't a crowd mover, most people stayed in their seats until S Club came on after the interlude. I do have to commend him on his confidence and energy though which is probably why S Club chose him as a support act.

Once S Club 7 started up on the stage the whole arena livened up and everyone stood to dance, I don't think I can remember any point that the crowd died down. It was a very pleasing atmosphere, for the most part it was very much like a giant club. Everyone danced, a lot of people had a drink and there was a happy and positive vibe around the whole place. Everyone knew the songs and each member had a solo section of the concert whether it was from their own projects or just an acoustic of a song. The solo segments gave the others a chance to change their outfits and prepare the next track so it was structured very efficiently. 

The highlight of the concert, for me personally, was their cover of Uptown Funk which was so similar to the original yet so different. They chose the right song to cover, it fit their voices and it made for a fantastic performance as everyone knew the words anyway because of the popularity of the song. 

I also quite enjoyed Rachel Stevens' solo segment because she sang a medley of More and Sweet Dreams My LA Ex which I also remembered from school discos and community center parties. I'm not saying that the other solo segments weren't as good, I'm just saying that Rachel's stood out for me as I knew the words from past Now! That's What I Call Music albums.

I loved the outfits they chose to perform in, they consisted of many sparkly items, which, as a bit of a magpie blogger I have to say that I couldn't help but admire them. The stage set itself was quite sparkly and they focused more on lighting than on props, to be fair though. they didn't really need much more because the songs are so catchy and they are easy to dance along to.

On a whole, I thoroughly enjoyed my experience at the Bring It All Back tour and I'd do it again if I had the chance. Leanne and I danced the whole time and we had sore throats afterwards from singing along which is always a good sign after a concert. Another thing that we've both found is that our muscles were really tight after the constant dancing and general energy of the night, I think it was Sunday afternoon before I felt back to normal again. 

Thanks for reading about my Saturday night gallivanting experience, I'd love to check out any links to similar posts in the comments if you have a spare moment.

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

50 Random Facts About Me

I've seen similar posts floating around quite a bit as of late so as a bit of a 'Get To Know Me' thing I figured I'd just get on with it. I'm actually quite interested to see what I type up because this isn't a planned post. Not all of the answers will be quite so long because there's 50 of them to go through.

1. I work in social media, I did originally want to be a journalist though and I did a BTEC Level 3 Diploma course in Journalism & PR. I really enjoyed it but I didn't feel like it was a good stand alone career for me.

2. I realised I wanted to do social media as a career after running the accounts for a charity I used to volunteer for. I ended up doing it because I was talking to my 'boss' about Twitter and promotion and it seemed like the right thing at the time.

3. I started this blog to fill time when I was unemployed, I was lucky that I started so late in the year because Blogmas gave me a lot to blog about.

4. Blogging actually got me my current job because I was able to talk about how I promote my own content and the sorts of strategies that I felt worked.

5. I love going to London, it's one of my favourite places because it's full of culture and it was the first place I ever went on my own.

6. I used to hate going abroad because I'm scared of planes and I used to get sunburned really easily but now I love going away and I even tanned a little bit last year in Tenerife.

7. I love tea but if it's not the brand I like, Yorkshire Tea, I tend to go for coffee. I used to prefer it but I decided to cut down and I developed a liking for tea instead.

8. I don't really drink that much, I have nothing against alcohol but I only drink occasionally and when other people are doing it too.

9. I used to be really picky, I hated curries and tomato based pasta dishes but now I love both types of food and I wouldn't pass up on either. I guess my taste buds changed or something, either way I would probably say that they are my favourites now.

10. I don't see why everyone is so obsessed with avocados at the moment, I've tried to like them but I just can't make myself.

11. I used to hate makeup and straightening my hair when I was in secondary school, I used to get bullied because of it and now I wear makeup and straighten my hair because I want to.

12. I prefer to wear monochrome fashion but I'm trying to inject some colour into my wardrobe to brighten it up for Spring and Summer.

13. I'm slightly addicted to dying my hair, I love changing it up and getting a shock when I look in the mirror. I'm craving black hair at the moment but it didn't suit me seven years ago so it probably won't suit me now.

14. I'm very varied in my music tastes, the two most recent albums downloaded to my phone were  May Death Never Stop You by My Chemical Romance and Now That's What I call Disney.

15. I love going to concerts I've been to see Nicki Minaj, McFly, McBusted (x2) and I'm going to see S Club 7 at the weekend with a friend.

16. I feel really uncomfortable if I get on the bus or the tube without music playing through my headphones, I don't know why but I just do.

17. I used to get really awkward if I was going to events or just out in general but now I love networking and meeting new people, I must be maturing.

18. I love to read, whether it's fiction, non-fiction or fanfiction. I also love reading fashion and beauty magazines because they inspire me to put together different looks and blog.

19. I have a full bookshelf of classics, biographies, teen fiction and most likely every other type of book you can buy. I also have boxes in my room and my sisters room because I have nowhere else to store them.

20. I love shows like Dr Who, Sherlock, Supernatural and Once Upon A Time. I was introduced to The Green Wing and Black Books by a friend and now I love those too.

21. I'm a Scorpio as I was born on the 11th of November, I certainly fit the traits of one too. I don't really take notice of horoscopes but I do like to read them.

22. I was supposed to be born on Halloween which would have been really cool but I was just about two weeks late.

23. My mum is called Paula and my dad is called John, they got married less than a year before I was born (I'm the eldest of three).

24. I've lived in Chilton, Spennymoor, Mansfield, Middlesbrough and now I live in Kirk Merrington which is VERY boring and quiet.

25. I haven't started driving yet and I'm not sure I want to, for the moment I'm quite happy with public transport (when it doesn't come too early or too late!).

26. I get the bus at about half six because if I got the next one I would be about half an hour late for work, it's a pain but it's also nice to be able to set up in peace on a morning.

27. I want to move out of my parents house within the next five years, I'm not sure whether that's possible but I'd love to be more independent.

28. I make five year plans but most people don't know where I see myself by that point, I'm not saying where because I don't want to jinx it!

29. I'm happy single because I don't like clingy men, which most are these days, though I'm not completely closed off from it.

30. I don't fancy men shorter or younger than me, I don't know why but I just don't feel right dating men in either of those categories.

31. I like tattoos and I will probably end up getting one but my dad doesn't like them, despite having them himself, so I'll wait until I move out.

32. When I was about sixteen I got my belly button pierced because my cousin wanted someone to get it done with her, I didn't tell my mum and dad and I got my uncle to sign the form.

33. I ended up letting the piercing close up but I'm probably going to get it redone at some point because I'm sick of having just a random hole in my belly.

34. I've never broken or fractured a bone before and I've only ever had stitches to get a mole removed despite being the clumsy oaf that I am.

35. Until I was about fifteen people used to pick up their glasses as I walked into the room because if anyone was going to knock them over it would be me.

36. I went through a phase when I couldn't go out without having my nails painted, I also used to do my friend Leanne's nails whenever she had a fancy dress party or an event to go to.

37. When I was in primary school I was in drama club and dance club, now I'm nearly twenty I can't dance and I haven't tried to act unless it was to get out of PE.

38. I love comics and I'm on team Marvel when it comes to the Marvel/DC argument, what are you going to do Batman? Charm me to death? Flash your cash?

39. My favourite Marvel comic is Captain America, I think I just like the whole wartime superhero thing.

40. I love the Marvel cinematic universe as well as the comic one, I think that they cast the right people for the Avengers.

41. When we were in sixth form, Leanne and I used to go to her house or our friend Chloe's to watch The Walking Dead or to paint her nails.

42. I went to Aqua Fit once because Chloe was running it and the top of my swimming costume wouldn't cooperate so I'm fairly sure I flashed the poor girl.

43. I used to run quite a bit once I decided to get fit but I just wasn't motivated to do it on my own, I walk a lot but the most running I do is when I nearly miss my bus to work.

44. My brother is three years younger than me (and a foot or so taller than me!) and my sister is eleven years younger than me.

45. My brother and I are very competitive with each other, we used to fight a lot but we've mellowed out quite a bit now.

46. I'm very close to my sister, I tend to influence her music and movie tastes quite a bit because when I was unemployed I just babysat all of the time and she picked up a lot of things from me.

47. When I turned eighteen, the nuisances to the right all wrote about how 'over the hill' I was in my birthday cards because I'm the oldest.

48. Michael (my male best friend) and I have a system for shopping around Darlington, we start at HMV, go onto Waterstones, CEX and then wherever I want to go.

49. Autumn (far left of the image) and I get on the same bus some days but because it's only for one stop we laugh at each other and wave.

50. I went to Comic Con last year with my friend Becky and I creeped out Drew Roy from Falling Skies because I didn't know how to act.

Thanks for reading this if you made it to the end then I applaud you because this is one hell of a long post.

Monday, 4 May 2015

Stress And Anxiety

I'm just going to say before I start this post that I'm not qualified in psychology or whatever but it's just a topic that I wanted to cover, stress and anxiety, which is something that I feel really affects me so I'm just going to go through how I deal with it.

Stress and anxiety are two subjects that are very significant on their own but they really tie in together for the most part. When I feel stressed or anxious, particularly over a stretched space of time, I get horrendous skin breakouts and that's actually when I start to realise that I need to take a step back and chill. A pamper evening is most definitely in order when this happens; I get a face mask to calm my skin, catch up on YouTube and maybe stick a vinyl on my turntable. 

I feel like it really weighs me down when I start stressing or worrying about something, it sticks in my chest and it just feels unbearable. I usually get anxious about other peoples perceptions of me and what I'm doing, I try to take on too much to prove myself and it makes me panic. To come back down from that I need people to tell me that I'm taking on too much or I just feel like I'm not doing things properly and I keep stressing. When I was younger I didn't really get stressed, anxious or nervous about anything unless I was flying or being pushed into a situation I was uncomfortable with, my friends always used to say I was the laid back one.

Over-eating or under-eating are things you really want to avoid, though, it is incredibly common for someone with anxiety to binge eat as a nervous habit or feel sickly enough to skip meals. My advice? Don't, just make sure you have something on your stomach and it may even make you feel better than you were previously. In the past I have skipped meals out of that sickly feeling but on the opposite end of the spectrum I've just sat and ate junk food and binged out. It's unhealthy and it will contribute to any stress related breakouts, it's more hassle than it's worth.

The main thing that helps my anxiety is sitting down and talking to people about what's concerning me, I'm just not exactly forthcoming about how I feel at first. When someone helps me break down a situation it just really gives me a boost and that feeling in my chest starts to get lighter, it's something that really helps. 

I'd be interested in hearing about how everyone else deals with stress and anxiety, I'm also here to talk if anyone feels like they need someone to just break things down. My contact details are in my 'Contact Me' page. Thanks for reading, I hope this has been helpful!