Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Introducing Kiss



One of my most favourite things about blogging is that quite often you get to try products that you may not have ever had the opportunity to otherwise. I always tend to stick with the same brands, and make up items that have always worked for me and that is why I completely relish any opportunity to try new cosmetics! I've even discovered some of my favourite brands this way! I recently got the chance to test out some new Kiss Products and I've been loving every minute of it...

Before we get started I'd like to just introduce you to the brand themselves. Kiss Cosmetics are an innovative brand committed to creating products that help us to get salon results at home. Reasonably priced and creative this is the brand for anyone who loves to pamper and take care of themselves but doesn't perhaps have the time or income to spend on beauty treatments. The concept is awesome and I definitely think they are going to go far! I was so excited when I was sent some products to try and I couldn't wait to share the results with you!  

Wing It Eyeliner
This was the one thing I was really intrigued by when I first saw the press release and I was so excited to use it when it popped through my letter box! Its essentially a black gel liner which is also water proof and smudge proof, however, what I liked about this most was that it features a dinky little eye stencil with 6 different looks to create. I probably wouldn't use this every day as it is a bit fiddly but the concept is fun and creative and the stencil actually really works to help you create the most perfect flicks every time. I have had a lot of practice over the years with my cat flicks as I wear them every day, but perhaps if you aren't as used to winged eye liner this could be a good place to start.

The actual liner itself was really good quality and its definitely more of a gel texture than other liners I have tried which can be quite mousse like and you really have to build up to the correct pigment. This is really creamy and goes on perfectly straight away. It's also super long lasting and I actually tried this out in the shower to see if it would hold up to its claims and it more or less stayed in place. For the price of this I think its great quality and would make a nice addition to your make up kit or just as an every day eye liner.

The one thing I didn't like about this was the brush but I haven't ever bought a gel liner where I used the brush that came with it so if you are like me you probably have your own eye liner brush anyways. For reference I use the Zoeva Wing Liner Brush which is one of the best in my brush collection! If you wear gel liner a lot then this brush is a great investment! I promise!


Natural Flourish Blooming Lashes-Daisy
As I mentioned previously in Thursdays blog post I have tried a lot of different false eye lashes over the years trying to find the best shape for my eyes and ones that sit quite comfortably on. It's something that I'm really getting used to now. These lashes are a little bit different to anything I've ever tried before as they use multi-angle technology to create the most fluttery voluminous lashes. In other words the lashes fan out in different direction to create a more natural look. I am obsessed with these as I much prefer adding volume to my lashes rather than length. I wore these to an event and they look so natural and really give my eyes such a pretty almond shape.

As normal I did have to cut these down a little so they would fit but I don't really mind too much as I cut them from the outside so that they would retain their natural shape. In terms of application I still find this the most difficult part although as I said its something I am trying to get used to. These lashes are also probably the most comfortable and wearable ones I have ever tried. They are incredibly light weight and if you light to wear lashes daily these would be a really good choice. They are also super affordable and I would without a doubt repurchase these. I also tend to not apply mascara or other products to my falsies so I can re-use them so even if I wore these just twice it still works out great value for money!


Kiss products feature lashes, acrylic nails and other cosmetics which can now be found in selected Asda, Boots and Superdrug stores across the UK!


Have you tried KISS Cosmetics yet? Would you use these products?
Lisa x
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Saturday, 28 January 2017

How I Stay on Track with my Workout Routine

Sweater-Topshop, Leggings-H&M, Water Bottle-Home Bargains

Like most girls I have my bad and good days when it comes to sticking to a half decent work out routine. There are times when I go about three weeks without one appearance at the gym and yet at other times I can go 7 consecutive days in a week and not get even the slightest bit bored. I've always lived a pretty active lifestyle starting from gymnastics, swimming and dancing when I was in primary school and then going on to cheerleading and long distance running in my teens. Unfortunately as I've merged into my mid twenties I've noticed that there's a real difference to how I was back then to how I am now. Between the ages of about 18 and 21 I ate junk constantly as well as having a terrible sleeping pattern and yet managed to somehow stay as skinny as I wanted. But I definitely wasn't at my most healthy eating disgusting foods like pot noodles and caffiene laden fizzy drinks and I also really struggled with running (something I'd always been good at) during this period due to having such an unhealthy lifestyle. 

Fast forward a few years and I still go through some of the same struggles that I faced back then. My diet is no longer a huge problem since I mainly stick to plant based and vegan foods which make my meals much more nutritious and full of fruits and veggies. Being conscious of my eating habits makes me more likely to make healthy choices as a lot of the time the fatty and naughty foods are often the ones that contain animal products. Don't get me wrong I have a massive sweet tooth and love the odd bit of chocolate and I can happily neck a whole bottle of rose wine but I definitely think my current diet is the healthiest it has ever been. If anything eating a little better has really motivated me to get more exercise and really help to keep a lifestyle that coincides with those eating habits.

As it stands I currently workout on average around 4 times a week although this varies depending on how busy I am with other things. I'll normally start a Monday with a good cardio session and some abs work. This can be anything from a 30 minute workout in my garden to a busy meta-fit class at the gym or even a PT session when I have the necessary funds. I really find this intense type of work out to be the best start to the week for me as it really gives me the motivation and energy to carry on.

Normally I also do one pole class a week at Pole Position Glasgow too which is a gymnastics based class good for toning the tummy and booty areas as well as increasing flexibility and strengthening different muscles. It also doesn't feel too hard as although it is difficult (its definitely not as easy as it looks!) it gets easier after each time and you will also have a lot of fun and probably meet some new friends too! Even though our teacher makes us do sit ups and stretches and the plank and I normally end up with ridiculous bruises it still doesn't feel like a work out because its such a good laugh so I'd definitely recommend. And for anyone who is a bit iffy about this kind of thing it definitely IS NOT sexy! Unless you want it to be that is...

In addition to this I will try and fit a couple of different gym workouts or classes into my week to include some weights and cardio. I'm a proud member of budget chain Pure Gym which is fine for me as I feel like it has everything I need and plenty of different classes! I also go running with my brother who makes me feel like the most unfit person on the planet because he runs competitively and takes it very seriously while I'm trailing behind gasping for air. We both time ourselves and try to beat our best times which makes it more challenging and fun!

 At the weekends I like to remain active but normally it will be in the form of a swim or a yoga session as these are two activities I find particularly relaxing and swimming really helps to soothe my muscles. Swimming in particular is also really good for anyone who can't take part in  high intensity exercise due to injuries or joint pain. Yoga is just great in general for anything really. It helps me get a good nights sleep as well as improving flexibility and alleviating stress. I can't recommend Yoga enough to anyone who is as busy a gal as I am seriously it will change your life!


It can be really really hard to stay motivated in all honesty in regards to trying to stay fit and active and like most girls (and guys?!) I do fall off the bandwagon from time to time. There are days when I just can't be bothered getting up at a certain time for a class and times when I'm feeling too ill or hungover (lol) to even think about moving from my bed, but I think in general I do pretty well. I'm not super lean and I don't have rock hard abs, I don't even think I have muscles tbh but the main thing that my workout routine has given me is confidence. I may not have drastically altered the way that I look physically but knowing that I can run 5K and not want to die is a sign that I am definitely fit on the inside, which is enough for me.

My areas for improvement are definitely to walk more as ever since I got my own car I literally drive everywhere which is not only bad for my fitness levels but also for the environment. My gym is only a 20 minute walk there and back so I really want to start making an effort to walk instead of driving so I'll see how that goes. I'm thinking about purchasing a Fitbit although I've heard mixed reviews so if anyone has any advice on this please let me know! Anything that helps me to stay that little bit more active is an investment! I'm also thinking about taking up running more seriously as it's the only thing that really makes a noticeable change to my body and I used to enjoy it so much! I may even track my progress with that on here.

At the end of the day it is also really important to take into consideration your own goals and how you want your body to look. We are so used to seeing all these '#fitchicks' on Instagram who work out 7 days a week and have incredible abs, and its disheartening because unfortunately not many people who work in a regular job five days a week have as much time to work on their bodies. Don't get me wrong I wouldn't knock abs if someone gave me them but I don't think I would even know what to do with biceps or a huge muscular bum. At the moment I want to look very feminine albeit a little more toned and defined. So please if you ever feel bad about your body because of social media remember that the majority of these people see fitness as their job or career. Don't feel bad because you don't have a six pack, perhaps concentrate on the fact you have strength and endurance instead!

So to recap the main advice I can give to anyone who finds it hard to stick to a good workout routine is to start with the most intense workout at the beginning of the week to get you off to a good start. I literally lay out my nicest gym clothes in the morning so I put them on straight away and it gets me into the mood for a workout. Next you want keep your workouts varied as possible so that you don't get bored! Find a few things that you really enjoy and stick with them for a while, and take up something else if they get a bit boring. Also I have found that working out with a friend or family member has really kept me on track as its just more fun having someone elses' support isn't it?! In the end if you are looking to lose weight try to eat as well as you possibly can. I have treats all the time but I can only do that because 80 percent of the time my meals are extremely balanced, healthy and full of veggies! Good luck with your fitness journey!

    

Do any of you have a workout routine? How do you stay motivated?
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Thursday, 26 January 2017

Trying Out Threads Eyelashes



I have always aspired to be one of those folks who apply false eyelashes like an absolute pro. I always think they look amazing on people who wear them and can really open out the eyes when used correctly. So when Threads asked me if I'd like to try a couple of pairs I was thinking in the back of my head that I really hope these are easy to apply because if not I'm in big trouble. Funnily enough I actually got on pretty well with them which if you watch my Insta stories (Instagram here) you might already know...

I received the Charleston and the BeeBop Lashes which are both very similar and relatively natural looking with the latter of the two being slightly shorter and finer. I'd say that they looked quite similar to other lashes I've bought in the drugstore before, however, the actual Threads Website holds other slightly quirkier designs. My one struggle with lashes is that I always have to trim them down to fit my eye shape and these were no exception.  They were easy to trim down and I like that they have quite a discreet lash line which is easy to disguise with a small amount of black eyeliner. I also found that the Charleston Lashes were much more suited to my face shape and flattered the shape of my eyes so if I was going to pick just one set then it would most definitely be those!

The application was fairly easy although I'd imagine for someone who wears them regularly it would be no problem at all. I like to use my tweezers and put a mirror both in front and underneath my face so I can really see how close I am getting to the lash line. After applying the glue I always tend to give it about 30-40 seconds to get proper tacky before sticking it on. I use my tweezers and my ring finger to ensure I am positioning the lashes correctly and hold for around 10 seconds to set in place. With these lashes this was all pretty straight forward and there wasn't too much faffing around. I also really think the adhesive that comes with these is a dream. I've been banging on for ages about my Esqido Eyelash Companion but this one is even better! 

Overall, I really think these lashes are perfect for someone like me who likes to keep things quite natural and wants as 'fuss-free' an application as possible. All falsies are a little bit fiddly when you think about it so the results I had when wearing these were definitely worth it. Unlike other brands I've tried they didn't come unstuck at the corner during wear and they were reasonably comfortable. I was quite aware of them but that's probably because I'm not that used to wearing eye lashes at all. These come in at £9.00 which I think is a tiny bit steep considering you can get pretty decent ones at the drugstore cheaper than this, but it all depends on how much wear you are going you get out of them! I might try another design next time! 


What is your favourite eyelash brand? Are you a pro at putting them on or a nightmare like me? I would love to know!
Lisa x
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Tuesday, 17 January 2017

My Sleep Anxiety and how I get the Perfect Nights Sleep


Here is a little secret you might not know about me...I have struggled to switch off at night and get a proper eight hours sleep since I was little. And it turns out I am not alone. According to The Great British Bedtime Report* the majority of Britons are now getting less than seven hours sleep a night with more than a quarter of us suffering from poor quality sleep on a regular basis.Getting poor sleep seriously affects our physical and mental health in ways we could not even imagine...

My Story
You might find it almost laughable to know that I was scared of the dark until the very adult age of 23. But its absolutely the truth. As a child I had night terrors, and suffered panic attacks in bed which led to hours of counselling for me. I have no idea why I was so terrified (and remained terrified) for so long, and I'm equally puzzled as to when this phobia magically disappeared because I'm not sure I remember it happening, but obviously as an adult I still sometimes feel anxious while I'm trying to fall asleep. I tend to over think and over analyse every situation that has happened to me that day or that might happen to me the next day. It could be anything from crashing my car on the drive to work to being late for a presentation, but this deep seated anxiety is something that normally only comes at night as I lie in bed trying to fall asleep. There is seriously nothing worse than poor quality sleep which ruins the next day and results in a lack of energy or enthusiasm. So, I'm going to share with you some of the steps I take in order to have a better chance at getting a good nights sleep...



1.Routine
I don't just mean going to bed and getting out of bed at the same time every day although that is equally important. What I'm referring to is how you spend those last hours before you get into bed at night. For me I tend to switch off from social media if possible around 10 pm and start to get things ready for the next day. I normally make a packed lunch and iron and lay out my clothes and make up as it saves me from rushing around in the morning. My routine consists of putting my pyjamas on, lighting a nice candle, and washing my make off and applying my skincare for the night.  

2. Food
I try not to eat or drink too much in the last few hours before I go to my bed. Normally I drink quite a lot of water during the day but I try to stop this at least two hours before I bedtime as I don't want to be woken in the middle of the night by my bladder. I also avoid certain foods as they can cause heartburn and indigestion as well as limiting my caffeine intake after 3pm. In case I ever feel desperately hungry I always make sure that I have some light snacks like popcorn or oatcakes. Even a small bit of toast or a yogurt can do the trick. I also tend to drink some herbal tea before bed or if I'm watching a program downstairs. I normally choose Tea Pigs Peppermint Tea because its my favourite but Chamomile Tea is supposedly one that actually aids sleep! 

3. Read
I also like to read for a bit before I fall asleep and at the moment I'm reading Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Reading is one of the most relaxing activities for me and it also makes my eyes tired quite quickly. It also stops me from thinking about other things that might cause unnecessary stress or anxiety while I'm trying to dose off.  If I really can't keep my mind on whatever I'm reading I get out my journal and a pen and start to write down some of the things I'm feeling anxious or stressed about and that way I feel like I'm finally getting rid of whats weighing me down.

4. Create a Comfortable Environment
I don't know about anyone else but I certainly can't sleep if there's mess all over my room, if I have anything other than pillows on top of my bed or if I'm too hot or cold. I always tidy my room a bit before I settle down at night or at least try to organise everything so it seems tidier. I then like to spray some pillow mist around. The one I'm using right now is called As Good As New by Champney's and I have no idea if it actually works but I like to think it does anyways. I used to sleep with the window open every single night (even in winter) because I like to breathe in fresh air and hate feeling stuffy. Similarly I hate wearing pyjamas that I don't feel completely comfortable in so I normally end up taking my bottoms off half way through the night if I get too hot or sticky.

5. Stretch and Exercise
On evenings where I have a bit more time to spare I like to do some stretches before I go to bed to get my body relaxed and also to prevent any back or neck pain the next morning. I don't have a set routine when it comes to this as I normally just stick a short Yoga video on YouTube (example here) and use that as my stretch routine. I used to go for a run most evenings before I went to bed but I found it just kept me awake because of the adrenaline so now I stick to relaxing exercises. Sometimes I even go for a bubble bath to relax my muscles even more afterwards and hop straight upstairs afterwards it really works a treat!


Those were my tips for getting a good nights sleep and how I combat any anxiety or stress in the evenings. I'm not an expert so please remember that these obviously aren't full proof and they won't ensure that you get a good sleep every night and if you suffer from any kind of sleep disorders please see a professional as you don't have to deal with this alone! See the National Sleep Foundation Here.

How do you ensure you get a good nights sleep? Is your sleep ever affected by stress and worry? 
Lisa x
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