Friday, 18 July 2014

Life Update

Hello everybodyyyyy!

This is just a quick post to update you on why I haven't been able to post new blogs recently as much as I'd like to - the main reason being that I've just been very busy! (I know I know, this seems like a silly excuse, but please hear me out 😊)

I finished my exams, and straight away went into a frenzy of graduation-preparation and making the most of hanging out with Uni friends as much as possible before we all go our separate ways forever.

Then two weeks ago I graduated from Durham University with a 2:1 (yay!) which was absolutely amazing and the best feeling in the world - I don't think anything can ever prepare you for that. Then I came home for a week to prepare for a volunteering expedition, which includes staying in Romania for 4 weeks, running a summer camp for orphans and also renovating orphanages. And Romania is where I am right now!

Straight after these 4 weeks I am going interrailing to Budapest, Bratislava and Vienna, and then finally home in late August. So you'll have to bear with me until then, as I won't be able to update  with a proper post until I'm back in England.

Don't worry though, I have a whole list in my little ideas book of what posts I want to write, and I am so excited to do them!

After August I should have all the time in the world to blog, as I will be an unemployed graduate living the high life in living back home with the parents. 😉

I hope you're all well, and that your summers are going great! If my current Romania expedition is anything to go by, I would say to you to try new things, push your boundaries and realise just how strong and resilient you are. Make this a summer to remember 😄

S xx

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Real Techniques Core Collection Make-up Brushes

Hello everybodyyy!

I hope you're all good and ready for some more make-up lovin' from me :) I recently bought some new make-up brushes and I really wanted to share this with you guys - they are definitely the most essential brushes to have in your collection! Brilliant for any summer balls/graduation/birthday/summer celebrations coming up soon.

The brushes that I got are Real Techniques Core Collection Kit by Sam and Nic Chapman, and I'd seen so many positive reviews about them that I had to try them. I can definitely vouch that they have lived up to their positive reviews!

The brush set is sold in Superdrug and Boots, but I got mine off Amazon as they came out to be £6-£7 cheaper than anywhere else at £14.65. It also comes with a handy portable carry case which doubles as a brush stand too:

These brushes have totally revolutionised my make-up routine, and made me realise the true importance of having a good make-up brush! I had no idea how much it would affect my make-up, and it gives an air-brushed look which doesn't make you look like you're caked in make up and doesn't leave any streaky foundation lines. My previous make-up brushes just weren't doing the job properly, and often left brush hairs over my face (not an ideal look). But these ones by Sam and Nic Chapman are genuinely the best ones I've tried, and the essential kit really does include the essential brushes that any girl should never be without.

The Real Techniques Core Collection kit comes with 4 brushes - foundation brush, buffing brush, detailer brush and contouring brush. Also, the tips of all the brushes are designed to be white - this hasn't happened because I forgot to wash them don't worry!

This is the buffing brush, and I mainly use this to blend in my concealer/foundation. The brush is great for this purpose, and I also use it to apply my Rimmel Matte powder (which I blogged about in my first make-up haul). This brush is just so soft and such a joy to use (as cheesy as that sounds!), and is the perfect size for the face. Because of how lovely and soft the bristles are, the brush does its job efficiently without feeling rough on the skin.

This little detailer brush is great, and I usually use it to reach the inside corner of my eye as this is an area which is quite tricky to get to with any other brush, or I use it to apply my concealer as well. You could of course use it for eyebrow shaping, applying red lipstick, or anything else really! Just remember that it is personal preference, you don't have to use the brush for its actual purpose. :)

This is the contouring brush which is my favourite, mainly because I'm only just getting into contouring! It is the perfect size for me for contouring, so for me it's a must-have. Again, it is so soft!

If you like to apply your foundation a little at a time, or if you want a thinner layer of foundation, then this brush is perfect for you. However, if like me you're sometimes in a rush to apply your foundation then you might want to consider investing in a bigger foundation brush, as this would allow a bigger application area. If you do decide to do this, I would highly recommend getting another Real Techniques foundation brush as Real Techniques sell a lot more make make-up brushes than just these ones! And because of the high calibre and quality of these brushes it is well worth investigating what more they have if you want a particular brush ;)

I'll end this post by saying that I would definitely definitely definitely recommend these make-up brushes, they are absolutely amazing! They are so soft, and make putting on make-up even more fun. They leave no streaks or hair bristles on your face, so applying make-up is much easier and quicker as you don't need to go over your foundation a second or third time to get rid of streaks. This brush set is an absolute must-have, and is a good starting point for someone who wants to build up their make-up brush collection!

Let me know what you guys think, or if you have some awesome make-up brushes in your collection that you love!

S xx

Thursday, 12 June 2014

One Direction WWA Tour Wembley - Photos


I wasn't planning on doing this, but I thought it might be nice to add a few more photos from the 1D concert seeing how my last post was basically just reviewing them! It was definitely a great night, and hopefully you can tell from these photos. All of these photos and videos were taken by me from One Direction's Where We Are tour at Wembley on 06/06/2014.

Also my next post will most probably be about these great new make up brushes I got recently, so don't worry I'll be going back to the realms of beauty soon! But in the meantime, enjoy your 1D boys ;)

S xx


5 Seconds of Summer - Opening Act

One Direction

Monday, 9 June 2014

Why I'd prefer One Direction in an arena - my experience of 1D's "Where We Are" Tour

Hello everybodyyyyy!

Firstly I just want to say a massive thank you to anyone who's reading this - I started this blog about 12 days ago now and I'm shocked at the amount of views it's had in so many countries!

Secondly, and the reason why I'm writing this blog post: I went to One Direction's Where We Are tour in Wembley stadium on Friday night (06/06/14), which was absolutely insane!

All the members of One Direction were absolute pros at singing live, and kudos to Harry for singing through a sore throat. Their gratitude to the fans is apparent, and it's nice that they are aware of what the fans have done for them even if the fans themselves don't even realise. This goes the other way too, as I don't think the 1D boys realise just how much of an impact they've made in lots of their fans lives. This concert showed the impressive dedication of the fans, as their love for the band was clearly shown in all the handmade signs which had obviously taken a lot of time to make. Surprisingly it wasn't just a couple of fans who had made banners, but I would say that it was the majority! Fairy lights, massive collages, and lots of thought had gone into their outfits and banners, and that, coupled with the fans who brought inflatable bananas or volley balls, made this concert enjoyable as you couldn't help but smile along with them.

Having said this, though, I'd be lying if I said that it was the best concert that I've ever been to. Whilst their singing was on point, the stage set amazing, and the stunning effects of the pyrotechnics, I still felt like there was something lacking - that being crowd interaction.

I don't think this is entirely 1D's fault though, as I think it is definitely very difficult to interact with a crowd of 90,000 in a massive stadium - and it is for this reason that I prefer smaller arenas. I'm also not saying that there was zero crowd interaction, as seeing Instagram and YouTube videos the next day told me all the little private interactions the boys had with the standing crowd at the front. However, whilst they interacted with the standing concert-goers, there were still very little interactions with the rest of the stadium, which is of course difficult in a stadium of that size. In my opinion this made it difficult for the crowd to really connect with the boys, as even in the five 2-3 minute interactions that did happen (this is 2-3 minutes for each band member for the entire concert), the majority of it was sadly lost due to the mumbling and echoing effect of the microphones.

So why do One Direction actually need to interact with the crowd? As Louis Tomlinson said during their performance at Radio 1's Big Weekend a couple of weeks ago:
 "I don't know why each of us have a talking bit, it's gonna be awkward by the end of it."
If we go by this comment, then maybe we don't need any crowd interaction, and only need to hear them sing live and nothing more.

However, in my opinion, fans come to a concert in order to see their favourite band live, in the flesh - and this includes seeing their human-y side, to engage with the boys who, for many of them, helped them or lifted them up in their times of need. For these fans, it wasn't a super-boyband that helped them; it was the individuals of Niall, Zayn, Harry, Liam and Louis who each helped them. For once, the fan's world and their favourite band's worlds have united in the same time in the same place, all of them living in the same moment. The fans want to live that moment with these boys who were there for them during the hardships of their lives, and this is clearly seen by noting how much effort the fans have put into their banners, signs, outfits and face paint. Rather than portraying the boys as merely performers there to sing live, then, perhaps more interaction and engagement with the crowd is necessary.

By being both a 1D fan and a student who has often needed some procrastination fuel, I have watched a lot of the YouTube videos from previous concerts that they have done in smaller venues. It is apparent from these that they are perfectly capable of interacting with the crowd, in that there were a lot more laughs and talking and question time in those previous concerts. In addition, what I liked about those previous concerts was the interaction that you saw between the boys themselves, allowing us to feel as though we are involved in a little snapshot of their lives for a night. This again is something that was lost a bit in the stadium tour, as the boys were often scattered across the stage in order to be seen by as much of the audience as possible in the vast amount of space that they had.

It is for this reason that I prefer a setting in a smaller arena, to enable more of a personal touch that seems to be lacking from the stadium setting. Don't get me wrong, I think that One Direction deserve everything that's come their way, including that of performing at stadiums; it's obvious that they work so hard in everything that they do - both the boys and everyone behind the scenes - and I want to congratulate them on that. Not many artists can sell out as many stadiums as they have, and frankly they deserve every ticket sale as they are each very talented and hard working individuals. I also understand that in order for the boys to reach out to as many fans as possible, it makes sense to use stadiums to allow more people the opportunity to go.

However, whilst it is apparent that in using a stadium setting we gain pyrotechnic effects and the opportunity for more fans to see a concert at one time, we also compromise on seeing the personal side of One Direction. Indeed, my favourite parts of this concert were when Niall had to leave briefly to go to the bathroom so the others were forced to talk, and when Liam told a one sentence anecdote of his naked dream last night. The goofy, chatty, jokey, random and sometimes weird side of One Direction that many fans know and love, is also the side of One Direction that stadiums sometimes make difficult for us to see.

S xx

P.S. Yesterday I uploaded a couple of photos onto my Instagram account, and a 1D fan found these photos by using the hashtag and started following me. Being polite I followed her back, and found that she had uploaded a video from the concert. Her caption for this was: "This was amazing and so touching. I'm so proud of my boys and the fandom. I can b myself around ANY directioner no matter there age, and they won't judge me. were a family, look wat we can achieve wen we work together! Directioners are all so friendly and i luv each and every one of u! Thank you for everything were there girls and there our boys and we always will be, forever! Luv u directioners and 1D". I don't know why but I really found this so sweet that some Directioners feel like this! I don't want to name her Insta just in case she doesn't want it to be known. She has a private account, which makes it all the more touching as she clearly isn't saying this to get attention or loads of likes from anyone. Just goes to show how influential One Direction can be!

Monday, 2 June 2014

Make-up Haul

Hi everyone!

I've finally finished my exams! Freedom has never tasted so sweet.

In true exams celebration, I went on a make-up haul as I felt I needed a much needed pampering session:

Top row (left to right):
Clinique  Even Better foundation, 03 Ivory
Sleek Make Up  Contouring and Blush Palette, Light

Bottom row (left to right):
Rimmel  Scandaleyes mascara, Extreme Black
Rimmel  Stay Matte pressed powder, transparent
Collection  Lasting Perfection ultimate wear concealer, numbers 1 and 2
Barry M  Gel Nail Paint, Rose Hip

Clinique Even Better foundation - Boots £24.00

I was in desperate need of some new foundation, and I can honestly say that this foundation is the best I have ever tried. It has great coverage, as you can apply a little on for daily wear and it still covers blemishes, or for a special occasion you can layer on more and it still looks great without looking like you're caked in make up. As I have pale skin, I've found that a lot of foundations can make me look ill and sickly. However, after wearing this foundation, my friends remarked how my skin looked more glowing and healthy, which is a great improvement from my previous foundation! I went to the Clinique counter in my local Boots in order to get an accurate skin match and I would definitely recommend this to get the best foundation for you. Not only do they match your skin colour with the foundation, but they also analyse your skin type. The foundation I got is best for a combination skin type (a mixture of dry and oily), but there are other foundations which cater for every skin type (e.g. if you are prone to break outs, if you suffer greatly from dry/oily skin etc.). Well worth the free consultation!

Sleek Make Up Contouring and Blush Palette - Superdrug £9.99

I am very new to contouring, and having heard positive reviews about this contouring kit I decided to give it a try. It's as good as everyone says it is! I would say that this is the perfect kit for anyone who is new or not that confident with contouring (as I am), because starting off with liquid foundation for contouring is not a good idea as the technique can be quite tricky and takes a lot to get used to. This kit comes with contouring powder, highlighter and a blush, it really does enhance the contouring effect. It comes in different shades according to your skin type (the palette that I got is Light 373).

Rimmel Scandeleyes Mascara - Boots £6.99

I'm still not sure about this mascara, as I've found that it tends to come off quite blobby (if you get what I mean). A lot of the mascara comes onto my lashes, so I've found that I'm using my old mascara to separate my lashes first, and then using Scandaleyes on top to enhance them as it does give a lot of volume. Volume-wise, this is great, and the brush applicator is also great as it is quite big so has a lot of coverage. But if you want to look like you have more than 4 eyelashes then I would recommend using something else to separate your lashes first.

Rimmel Stay Matte pressed powder - Boots £3.99

This is an absolute God-send. I use this powder to set my make-up (after I've put on concealer and foundation), and it sets me for the rest of the day. Before I used this, my make-up used to slide off and I used to re-apply about twice a day, but now I can just apply it in the morning and not worry about it until I go to bed. My friend Hannah recommended this to me, and I'm so glad she did! Also, because it is transparent, it is good on a lot of skin colours. Definite must-have!

Collection lasting perfection concealer - Boots £4.19 each

As you may have noticed, I have these in two colours (Fair 1 and Cool Medium 2). This is because my skin colour is floating in between the two on different parts of my face. I use the lighter one for the dark circles under my eyes, as this really needs to be light to properly combat those pesky dark circles, and I use the darker one to cover blemishes in darker places of my face like near my jawline. They are first to go on my face in my daily make-up routine, and I apply them underneath my foundation. I think they do a really good job in covering any unwanted blemishes! Quite cheap as well.

Barry M Gel Nail Paint - Rose Hip - Boots £3.99

Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a complete nail polish junkie. I can't step into Boots or Superdrug without buying one, and as my mum says, nail polish is my "signature look". However, I am still undecided with this nail polish. Don't get me wrong, I love love love Barry M nail polish, and I trust the brand completely as the majority of my nail polishes are from Barry M. It's just that I'm undecided about the colour. It's a light pink pastel-y colour, and whilst this looks amazing, it just isn't right for me as it clashes with my skin colour. I have quite olive-y skin, so some colours just don't suit me. However, if you don't have olive skin then I reckon this could look really great. As it is a gel nail polish, after a couple of coats it is completely opaque and gives a really good effect. I've found with most Barry M nail polishes that they last a couple of days before they start chipping - this will of course differ from person to person, as I am quite a clumsy person where chipping is inevitable.

So that's it from my mini beauty haul! Sometimes you just need to treat yourself, and for me, today was just one of those days. If you have any questions then please feel free to leave a comment! :)

S xxx

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Hello and Procrastinations


So it's 3 days (and counting) until my final exam EVER IN MY LIFE, as I am nearing the end of my undergraduate degree! I've wanted to do a blog for a while, but life always seemed to get in the way.

I kept telling myself to wait until I'd completely finished all of my exams to start a blog, so naturally I had to start before they did actually finish. I'd like to think that it's because I'm just so eager to venture into the blogosphere (is that a word?), but I'm fairly sure my never-before-seen levels of procrastination are also to blame.

So what's uppp! My name is Susannah, and I'm 21. It is currently 10.55pm, I am in my university bedroom and I should be revising right now. I'm sure there are many students out there who are in exactly in the same position as me, so high fiiiiiiive! BuzzFeed really is very interesting isn't it.

This blog will mainly be of random thoughts or events that are happening in my life, with the odd bit of fashion, make up, afternoon teas and One Direction thrown in too. I don't want to label myself too much, as this is probably going to be a chatty blog which could end up going anywhere!

S xxx