Monday, 21 September 2015

Best Products for Contouring and Highlighting

If there's one thing that I never forget to do in my morning make up routine its a good old contour and highlight to the cheek bones. No matter how late I am for work, or university or coffee with the girls I always manage to spend that extra five minutes really bringing my face to life; highlighting and sculpting those facial features. I think its the one thing that really makes a difference and I honestly notice so much when I don't do it! It also looks gorgeous in photography and really gives your face shape and features the much needed definition under the bright light of flash photography. I thought today I'd go through some of the products (and tools) I use to achieve the highly coveted look...

So to start off with my highlighting products I have one golden oldie and one fairly new product. I have used the Rose Gold Blush by Sleek for what seems like forever and it is honestly the most gorgeous blusher and highlight. Despite the small price tag this is seriously pigmented and makes my cheeks look like they have been sprinkled with fairy dust, and its also a super flattering shade of pink too; suitable for all seasons and very natural looking. I use this on the apples of my cheeks to really bring them to life on top of my Topshop Glow Pot which is a rather new addition to my collection, and by god don't I wish I had found this sooner. This is like pearls is liquid form its honestly so gorgeous. I use this on my cheeks, my brow bone, my nose and even my cupids bow. It's one of the only highlighters I can use that really shows up and gives my skin such a beautiful sheen. You only need the tiniest amount too!

To sculpt and contour my cheekbones I use my Clinique Chubby Sculpting Contour Stick and draw triangular shapes beneath my cheek bones and line the underneath of my jaw, temples and the sides of my nose. This product looks scary but I honestly swear that it isn't, and I find that it can give off a much more natural look than a powdered product which can be cakey or muddy looking at times. I normally use my Real Techniques Flat Contour Brush to buff the product in and diffuse any harsh lines. If I really want it to last the day though I'll sometimes go over it with a powder product; usually Benefit Hoola; the cream product underneath really helps to keep it in place!

If I'm rushed for time I normally just use highlight and contour in a powdered form as it is often much more straightforward to use and the one I've been reaching for recently is the Maybelline Master Sculpt . This is essentially a contour kit; although I'm not overly keen on the powdered highlight which isn't separate from the darker product. I normally use a Real Techniques Buffing Brush or Contour Brush from the Core Collection to do this as the smaller contour brush really fits right into the shape of my face whilst the other bigger brush helps to blur out any sharp lines and create a gorgeous natural look! The product is generally really good despite my dislike for the highlight and lasts for ages! Be careful not to overdo it though or it can make you look a little muddy!

Do you guys like to contour? What are your favourite products for doing the job?  

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Arriving in Lisbon

As some of you may know already I'm off on exchange to Lisbon in Portugal so I haven't had much time to blog over the past few weeks! But I'm very excited to finally be blogging again after a hectic week of settling into a city in a completely different country that is going to be my home for the next few months. It's been a really scary but amazing journey so far and I thought I'd give you all a little update on what has been going on and how I have been settling in to everything now that I've been here over a week...

When I arrived at Lisbon airport I literally felt sick.; I thought I was going to throw up in front of everyone waiting to collect their baggage. I even had to get a man to help me collect my suitcase as I honestly felt so sick. As I walked through the airport I remember feeling the most apprehensive I have ever felt in my life, about a million thoughts going through my head and I felt like crying or just getting on the plane back home, but as I walked through the arrivals area I saw Beatriz (a portuguese girl who had been sent to help me settle in) and I was instantly put at ease. She spoke amazing English and seemed interested in all the same things as me. She helped me into a cab and took me to my new apartment. 

My new flat is a lot different from anything I would have had back home. Its a very old building which has been renovated to look newer with amazing decor inside. Its very basic but my bedroom is huge and has more than enough space for all my clothing and a desk to study. At the minute I only have one flat mate; a portuguese boy who works in town. As he's working so much we never seem to be in at the same time so I haven't gotten to know him that well yet, however he has been really helpful in showing me the shops, and the nearest metro station ect. 

The day after I arrived I met up with Beatriz and the other exchange student from my university and we all went shopping and for lunch together, and afterwards we were taken to our new university to fill in forms and apply for a monthly metro card ect. It was so nice in those first few days having people (and especially someone local to my host country) to show me around and help me relax and just enjoy my time living in a beautiful city with lots of other amazing people. It's honestly a lot easier to meet new people and find like minded exchange students to go shopping or sight seeing with as everyone is pretty much in the same boat and is here to make friends so I've not had any bother at all. 

So far I've been on a river cruise, to two nightclubs, tasted the local beer (it costs only 1 euro!!), been on a wine and cheese night, been to the beach and started my welcome week at my new university. It's also really nice that the weather has been very warm and sunny so far although I've not had many opportunities to work on my tan seeing as I've been so busy. I've met friends from Britain, Spain, Bulgaria, Germany, Holland, and the USA and I think I'm really starting to settle in. 

I also worried about having a vegetarian diet at the beginning as nowhere seemed to sell all the products I buy at home however, some friendly locals have pointed me in the direction of a health store about two metro stops away which sells all of the soya products I could want and more. I've also found a lot of resturaunts using Happy Cow and I'm also really enjoying how inexpensive it is to eat and drink here! 

Overall, I've had a wonderful first week and I don't have any doubts that this will be such a valuable and exciting opportunity for me! I can't wait to see what happens next! 

Have any of you been on exchange? Do you have any advice for me? I would love to know all about it in the comments or on twitter!  

Thursday, 3 September 2015

New Shoes?

As a blogger its very hard not to have a shopping addiction. When you have the old 'its for my blog' excuse in the back of your mind its always very hard to resist wanting to pick up *everything* in the shops! Now every now and then I pick up something in shops that feels like it could have been made with me in mind! Who knew that this would be EXACTLY what I had been looking for all along?! Its even better when I find something of this nature that doesn't break the bank! Lets take a moment to appreciate the beauty of these Topshop Sandals shall we... 

For basically the whole of summer I've been looking for neutral coloured sandal with a small heel that can class as both day and night shoes. Something to take me from shopping to the cocktail bar as quick as I can apply my red lipstick. I found these in Topshop recently at just £28! Yup super affordable and when you take off the student discount how could I possibly resist?! I love that these will add some serious chic to any old black T-shirt dress or jeans and cami combo and I can't wait to wear these in Portugal! They are also *reasonably* comfortable and easy to walk in which is the most important thing after all (yeah right) and I feel more dressed up with these on as they look so classy and expensive. Also I'm a massive fan of snake print so they got that right! 

I'm super glad I'm going to be taking these abroad for a few months as I'm not quite sure they would have got much wear in rainy Glasgow. I have such a love/hate relationship with Topshop as they sometimes charge ridiculous prices for something that I just know EVERYONE will be wearing in a matter of weeks. They also either get things completely wrong or totally and utterly spot on and in this case its very much the latter. Thank you for literally creating my perfect sandals, and for knowing exactly what I wanted even when I didn't! Lets hope you manage to continue this right through to next season and beyond. 

I'd love to know how all of you feel about these sandals and where you go to find your perfect pair? 

*You guys can also check out my blog sale here 
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