Matt vs Shine with Essence

My lipstick obsession has got out of hand since last Summer. My collection seems to grow each week and I have every colour and texture imaginable at this point. The one thing I just can’t make my mind up on is which finish I prefer though- one day I’ll be sporting a vampy matt lip and the next I’ll be wearing something sugary sweet and glossy.

One of my favourite brands for lip products is of course Essence, the super affordable brand stocked exclusively at wilko.com and in selected Wilko stores. With a huge array of lipsticks and glosses coming in at under £3 per piece I find it super hard to resist temptation- and really, what’s the need when you can get several new looks for under a tenner?

I was recently sent a selection of lip products as part of their Matt vs Shine campaign. As I mentioned at the beginning of this post I really can’t decide which team I’m on but I’ve popped up some little reviews of each shade and how I’ve been wearing them (minus the evidence because once again, I fail at taking photos of myself!)

In the first picture we have a trio of lip glosses. The pale pink at the top is hands down my favourite Essence lip product to date- it’s the shine shine shine wet look lip gloss in shade 02 (smile, sparkle, shine) and features an awesome prismatic glow whilst remaining subtle enough for daily wear. It’s probably my most worn lip product at the moment and I have a back up ready for when it runs out! The middle shade is another shine shine shine gloss in shade 07 (happiness in a bottle). This is a bold pinky neutral shade with a lovely shine, it gives the coverage of a lipstick whilst remaining light with a lovely shine to it, as the name would suggest. This is such a great colour for this time of year and I’m loving it teamed with a berry toned outfit and my copper hair. The third product in this photo is a matt matt matt long-lasting lipgloss in shade 05 (simply be an icon). I found myself reaching for this on a night out in Scotland- it’s light to wear and not at all drying whilst giving a super bold punch of colour that didn’t budge all night, even several vodkas in. This matt shade costs £2.30 whilst the shine glosses are £2 each.

The second picture plays host to two lipsticks that couldn’t be more different if they tried. First up is the sheer and shine lipstick in the shade candy love (12). For anyone who loves a “your lips but better” look this is the lipstick for you. It’s so sheer in colour and so light to wear you wouldn’t really know you’ve got anything on. I’ve been popping this on when I’m running late and want to look a bit more polished in a hurry. This has become the ultimate handbag staple for me! Secondly we have the matt matt matt lipstick in shade 08 which is a deep, dark burgundy colour perfect for wearing with this season’s Victoriana trend. This isn’t a lipstick for the faint hearted as it really doesn’t budge once it is on, but it has a super light texture and non-drying formula that I love. Both of these products cost £2.30 each.

Are you team matt or team shine when it comes to lipsticks? Let me know in the comments.

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Products sent to me by Essence for blog post consideration.

Cats&Coffee

So this post concludes my trio of outfit posts in collaboration with the fabulous Wearall and it just so happens that I was given another opportunity, this time to create a personalised top from YourDesign (who have a whole selection of personalised t-shirts to choose from) which when added together made for the perfect casual outfit. It’s also a debut post for my spur of the moment hair colour change- booked in to go for my usual pinky/red shade I made the snap decision to go, well, orange! I’m not 100% sure how much I love it at the moment, I think I’ll probably go back to red after this but it’s fun to have something to bright- especially given how bleached out my hair was looking prior to my trip to the hairdresser- it’s not usually this floofy but humid weather conditions and a disposition to frizz were against me.

Skirt c/o Wearall (get it here) | Baseball tee c/o YourDesign | Trainers: Puma

I love a good slogan tee so being presented with the opportunity to create my own was fantastic. Out of the range that YourDesign offers I decided to go for a classic baseball tee, which costs a very reasonable £15 and emblazoned it with two of my favourite things in life- cats and coffee. You can select from a range of images and fonts from those on the YourDesign website or you can upload your own photos which also makes it a great gifting option. The whole process was really simple to do and delivery was quick so if you can’t find the slogan you’re looking for on the high street, or are looking for an extra special gift then I can’t recommend the service from YourDesign enough.

I have praise for Wearall as well, each and every item I’ve been sent by the brand has been great. Sizes do tend to be a bit on the small size so do bear that in mind, but again with swift delivery and plenty of special offers and discounts I strongly suggest heading over there for a new-season spend up.

This is me signing off for a week or so now- I’m off on holiday tomorrow- a week in The Highlands with my boyfriend and I couldn’t be more ready for the break!
Blogging will resume once I’m home and recovered and hopefully I’ll be feeling refreshed and full of new ideas for the blog as well as a whole host of new content from my trip away.

If you were designing your own slogan t-shirt, what would it say?

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Late to the Game

It’s probably not escaped anyone’s notice that off the shoulder has been a big trend over the last few months. As is standard with me it’s a fashion that I’m very slow on the uptake with, and it’s only now, thanks to a collaboration with online fashion retailer WearAll that I’m trying it out.

This post is the first of three in partnership with WearAll, a brand I also teamed up with last year. They’ve got some great on trend pieces in stock at the moment and everything is super affordable too.

Dress c/o WearAll (get it here) | Shoes c/o Lotus

This isn’t my usual style of dress at all, I’ve always dismissed it as being too young for me, or too dressy for the kind of life I lead. That and I assumed that the off the shoulder design would be irritating- it’s not in this case thanks to the addition of thin straps too. This is exactly why I love collaborating with brands though- a chance to try things I’d otherwise never get around to and discovering that actually, I can pull it off.

Teamed with these vibrant blue court shoes from Lotus this is the kind of outfit I’d wear for a date night with Bob. I can equally see myself dressing it down a bit with a pair of Converse or my pink puma trainers to make it more suitable for day wear. Either way I do really like this dress and it’s a welcome addition to my wardrobe. Long term readers will know I’m partial to a spot of floral and the colours in this dress make it ideal for the upcoming Autumn months.

Are there any styles you tend to avoid? If so, do you think you could be persuaded to give them a go? Let me know in the comments and stay tuned for the next of my WearAll outfit posts.

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Baring all with Quiz Clothing

2017 has been the first year in a considerable while where I haven’t had a wedding or other special event to go to. I still love a cheeky browse of occasion dresses though, especially as one of my cousins got engaged at the weekend so there is definitely at least one wedding on the horizon.

I was recently contacted by Quiz Clothing who matched me with the dreamiest, most stunning dress- and whilst it might be a bit OTT for a wedding I’m very much hoping that I can find some cause to wear this other than prancing around the garden.

Dress c/o Quiz Clothing (here) | Shoes: Mary Portas at Clarks (old)

If I were shopping for a dress then nude wouldn’t be a colour I’d usually consider, I’d long ago dismissed it as a bit…naked looking if I’m honest and not something that would suit me.
Popping this sequin adorned maxi dress on though and I’m converted. For the time it took to get these photos I felt like a complete princess- I wish it was acceptable to dress like this every day!

The process of getting these photos did stir up a few conflicting feelings though. As I said, this dress really does make me feel like a princess but at the same time it clings, it sticks to curves I’m only just starting to see appear. It hammers home just how much my body has changed in the last few months and of course that is a bittersweet moment.

My main issue right now is that I’m only about 50 percent of the way through the weight gain process, but in my mind, thanks to the twisted grasp of an eating disorder I’m already there and beyond. Putting on an outfit like this can really play havoc with that mindset and it’s actually taken a huge amount of courage to post these photos due to how I see them vs. how I’m assured the rest of the world (well, my readers) will see them.

And still I persist. Onwards and onwards to a life where I don’t care that my arms aren’t stick like, that my stomach isn’t concave and my face is fuller. In the past I’ve always had in the back of my mind that if I don’t feel good at my target weight I can always go back- as warped as that sounds. This time I don’t have that. This time it’s final and I refuse to entertain ever going backwards again. It’s making this whole journey that much more difficult whilst I’m going through it- but the future? MY future? That excites me in ways I can’t even begin to explain.

Back in to the world of fashion & shopping now and I am absolutely loving some of the new arrivals on the Quiz Clothing website. I’ve always advocated them on the blog but right now there is literally SO much I want- if you’re looking for affordable and on trend wardrobe updates then do pop along and check them out…as you can see, they’re particularly good for a fancy dress or two.

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Cosmic Vibes

The other week, fuelled by good news for us both from work Mum and I popped on the bus and headed in to Cabot Circus for a long overdue girly shopping trip. It had been forever since we last managed to do this and it was so nice to spend some time browsing the new season arrivals, having a lazy lunch and generally catching up.

Of course one of our first stops was Monki, as ever they have some amazing pieces in right now- my wish list is huge. Sadly my budget is not huge so I had to limit myself to just a couple of bits this time round but I’m setting aside some money for another treat in the not too distant future.

Dress: Monki (here) | Boots: River Island

I absolutely love this print, it reminds me of outer space and the entire range of items with it on have made their way on to my wish list (how awesome are these trousers?)

I’ve said before how much I love Monki and their over-sized dress style, perfect for someone who’s still on the weight restoration journey and generally ideal for chilling out and relaxing in whilst still looking cool. I paired the dress with my rose gold ankle boots for a girly dinner date with my best friends but I’ve also worn it with my standard Converse/Pink Puma trainers for more casual vibes.

Do excuse the state of my hair right now. It is LONG overdue a cut and colour, the 29th of August cannot come soon enough! I decided to try and stretch it out for four months rather than three and the regret is hitting hard!

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