Favourites: January 2016!

January has been a long month filled with dark, cold nights (and payday seemingly forever at bay). For most of us we are back at work, harshly thrown into reality after the season of indulgence, with those resolutions to get fit and save money already failing.

But it’s also a chance to reset and reassess your life. This is the first year where I am eagerly awaiting new beauty launches and keeping up with trends. While these are not new launches, these are the products which softened the January blow for me!


L’Oreal Mega Volume Collagene 24h Black Mascara
I was a little skeptical at first about this mascara because I usually go for thinner brushes – I find the thicker type here tends to clump up my lashes – but L’Oreal have really delivered on their promise of a product that provides volume and length for lashes. Thoroughly recommended.

Caudelie Lip Conditioner
I suffer greatly with chapped lips. It seems that no matter what I do I can’t escape the dryness and peeling but this lip treatment from Caudelie has helped repair some of the damage. It’s intensely nourishing and long-lasting, and is always in my bag.

Lush Sunkissed Lip Tint
This shimmering lip tint works wonders in these cold months to both project my lips from the elements whilst providing a subtle dash of colour. With yummy and natural ingredients such as banana, oatmeal and almond oil what is there not to love?

Stila Smudge Pot Eyshadow & Gel Eyeliner (Kitten)
This product is magic. Gel-like in the jar but quickly turning to a powdery dust upon application, this will innovate your eyeshadow routine. And you can also use as a liner! I personally wouldn’t with this neutral shade but can totally see the appeal for the darker tones in the range. I may invest further.


L’Oreal Color Riche Eyeshadow Quad – Green/gold tone
This came in a free Xmas gift I received when I purchased the L’Oreal blush nudes palette from Boots and whilst it may be small, it packs the punches with four highly-pigmented shades that can deliver both neutral and bold looks. I keep this in my handbag as it contains the shades that can take me from the office to the afterparty.

La Roche-Posay Hydreane BB Cream
Foundation just doesn’t work for my skin tone. I often end up looking like an orange with even the lightest of shades, so I tend to even out my skin tone using BB creams instead. I love this one from La Roche-Posay which is lightweight and moisturising.

Ole Henriksen Truth Serum Collagen Booster
I have never used such a fast-absorbing face product before. This is exceptional and although the price tag reflects that, it is worth every penny. Admittedly, I received this through a subscription box but this may be the first skincare product I will splash out on as I cannot find any alternatives. This serum is like a daily vitamin supplement for your skin and you will be shocked by how quickly it comes into action. I apply this to my face and neck after cleansing and before moisturising.

Blogosphere Magazine
A magazine written by bloggers, for bloggers, about blogging you say? I’m in. It’s so great to see many familiar faces from the world of beauty, health, photography, fitness and food blogging amongst these pages. I especially loved the article on how brains and beauty are not mutually exclusive. Whilst this issue may be a few months old, you can still pick one up on the Blogosphere website (including a tablet edition) or from the computing shelves at WHSmiths.

Sound Intone Bluetooth Headphones
I love watching YouTubers but not everyone shares this taste, so a good pair of headphones are a necessity for me. These connect wirelessly via Bluetooth to a number of devices and so are perfect for the workday commute, as well as around the house when doing chores (yawn). Just remember to charge them up (although they come with a connecting cable just in case – phew) Added bonus: the fold up neatly so can be comfortably carried around in your handbag. I got mine from Amazon, £26.

What have you loved in the first month of 2016, and are you tempted by any of the products discussed today? Please let me know in the comments and subscribe if you would like to read more posts from me.



Visual Post: Food-spiration!

Hot lemon/ginger tea really helped with my recent cold. Add some honey if you prefer it sweeter and boil on the stove top until your ingredients infuse themselves into the water.
This was a tasty and quick lunch which left me feeling full until dinner! I stir fried some pork, yellow peppers and broccoli with soy sauce, ginger, chilli and garlic. Add some sriracha if you dare and serve in a warm, wholemeal tortilla with a dash of garlic mayo or whatever sauce you fancy.
Another quick and simple dish that works as either lunch/dinner or a snack! I roasted a chicken breast before slicing into thick chunks and adding to some steamed sugarsnap peas. Give it some kick with a dash of chilli flakes, maldon sea salt and garlic olive oil.

#DrugstoreWeek: My current highstreet beauty faves/routine!

Bleurghhh. It’s that dark, dank time of year where everyone is sick. Apologies for the lack of posts so far in 2016 as I have been suffering with a bad cold/chest infection/sore throat thing.

But that’s enough about me. It’s drugstore week! And here are my current high-street beauty favourites…


Let’s start with the face. I thoroughly believe in the power of a primer and adore the Rimmel London Lasting Finish Primer which is £6.99 from Boots. This is very a lightweight primer which absorbs quickly – leaving my face ready for whatever I choose the throw at it.

After this I apply the Collection Perfecting Minerals Foundation (Light To Medium) but this has sadly been discontinued. I include it here because I finishing it up and have yet to find my replacement!

I love the built in brush application and it does not cake onto my fine lines – which are slowly appearing as I quickly approach the big 3-zero. You may still be able to grab this online from places like Amazon/eBay but please help me find the equivalent product! I tried the L’Oreal True Match Powder Foundation but the packaging frustrated me so much by leaving stray powder over my clothes and carpet. Not good. It may work once decanted into an empty jar but until I have one spare I will not touch it.

Moving onto brows I have a product that is technically not drugstore but it is highstreet, so I don’t count this as cheating! If you haven’t checked out the beauty range from H&M then you are really missing out on some top notch products that come at a very reasonable price tag.


This eyebrow pencil  has replaced the trusty Soap & Glory archery as my ultimate brow product and it’s only £2.99! They come in a range of shades and personally I find the colours offered match me better (I use espresso brown) and look more natural than the Soap & Glory archery. I set this using the transparent Maybelline Brow Drama Sculpting Mascara (£4.99, Boots).

Eyes are pretty straightforward: I start by applying the No7 Stay Perfect Smoothing & Brightening Eye Base (£7, Boots) followed by the Makeup Revolution Eye-Shadow Palette Flawless (£8, Superdrug; pictured at the top of this post). This is excellent value with 32 highly pigmented, versatile shades. I am still exploring my options with this palette so use different shades depending on my mood and the occasion.

I always follow with my signature cat-eye using the Rimmel London Exaggerate Waterproof Liquid Eye Liner (£5.29, Boots),  Rimmel Soft Khol Kajal Eye Pencil (jet black, £2.99, Boots) and the L’Oréal Paris Telescopic Mascara (£10.99 Boots).

For lips I love to moisturise using the Rimmel London Lip Conditioning Balm by Kate (£2.99, Boots) for simple days. I am lucky in that my lips have a nice natural shade for those neutral days and so lip-colour is not a part of my everyday beauty repertoire. If I am feeling a bit more adventurous and am going for some colour, I begin by prepping my lips using this primer from H&M (£7.99) which really acts as a good base.


My current fave is the tinted lip butter from Revlon in the shade Peach Parfait  (£7.99, Boots) as it is a subtle shade that also provides moisture – perfect for the cold, winter months. I also am enjoying Flutter Kisses from NYX in their high voltage range (£5.50, Boots). This is again a subtle shade – your lips but better.

What are your drugstore favourites? Can you recommend any buys for my low-end (but not low-quality) collection?

Wrap up and stay warm people.



VIVIFY Awards: Best of 2015

Welcome to the inaugural Vivify Awards where I showcase my favourite items from the world of beauty & lifestyle from the previous year!


Most of these products are from the drugstore and are under £10 – score! I personally believe high-end products aren’t worth their high-end price tag so how about trying these out next time?

Mascara: Maybelline Lash Sensational (in shade Very Black)

Eye-liner: L’Oreal Paris Superliner Superstar Black

Foundation: Collection Perfecting Minerals Foundation Light To Medium

Powder: L’Oréal Paris True Match Powder (in shade Rose Ivory)

Brows: Soap & Glory Archery 2-in-1 Brow Pencil (in shade Hot Chocolate)

Eye-palette: Maybelline, The Nudes

Nail polish: Ciate Paint Pots Red Hot Chilli

Lipstick: KIKO Ultra Glossy Stylo SPF 15 # 813 (Apple Blossoms)

Lip balm: Revlon ColorBurst Lip Butter Peach Parfait


Hair colour: Live Colour XXL Radiant Red

Shampoo & Conditioner: John Frieda Radiant Red

Styling Product: Got2B POWDER’ful

Dry shampoo: Batiste Original


Make-up remover: Garnier Micellar Water

Serum: Olay Anti Wrinkle Firm And Lift 2 In 1 Moisturiser And Serum

Primer: Rimmel London Lasting Finish Primer Transparent

Moisturiser: Simple Kind to Skin Replenishing Rich Moisturiser

Cleanser: Simple Kind To Skin Vital Vitamin Foaming Cleanser

Wipes: Simple Micellar Water Cleansing Wipes

Toner: Simple Kind To Skin Soothing Facial Toner

Face Mask: KIKO Hydrating Mask


Candle: Yankee Christmas Memories

Book: 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami

Album: At Least for Now by Benjamin Clemintine

Song: Chandelier by Sia

Bag: Fiorelli Flapover Shoulder Bag

TV Series: Pretty Little Liars


Best health & fitness vlogger: Carly Rowena

Best yoga channel: Brett Larkin

Best beauty blog/vlog: Vivianna Does Makeup (blog, YouTube)

Best tutorials: Lisa Potter-Dixon

Upcoming vlogger/blogger: Fashion Mumblr (check out her new-look blog here!)

Best daily vlogs: The Saccone-Jolys

Most unique content: Zoe London

Best YouTube channel: Helen Anderson

What a year it has been! I cannot wait to see what 2016 has in store in the world of beauty and blogging.



NB all opinions are my own and this post contains no sponsored content


Happy New Year: Reflections on 2015 and looking ahead

Happy New Year one and all!

2015 was a big year for me which was dominated by my wedding. I also started this blog and really enhanced my make-up skills as I prepared to do my own face on my big day! I also went for the big chop and finally got my beloved red pixie cut.


In 2016 I hope to really develop the blog further in terms of regular content which is both varied and, hopefully, relevant and interesting to you. I am going to get to work on my photography skills now I am finally armed with a DSLR. This is both for blog posts and to capture memories on my upcoming honeymoon.

From a personal aspect I want to continue my fitness and health regime which began almost a year ago. I definitely need to get back into yoga after this season of indulgence! I lost 20 lbs last year and I hope to get more toned and strong in the year ahead.

Thank you for all the follows, likes and comments in the 8 months I have been blogging. Please follow the links at the top of my page for other social media accounts. I look forward to reading your posts and watching your vlogs in 2016! 


Thank you for taking this journey with me. I hope in 2016 I can build upon the foundations laid in 2015!


Bright days aheadcredit to http://www.agirlobsessedblog.com/ for the first image on this post!