Archives for the month of: March, 2014

Monday morning is my most productive morning of the week. I start the day with a half hour spin before heading to the gym to do some toning exercises. Having finished at the gym Ellie and I do our food shop for the week and are still home by 9am most weeks. This week in the middle of Sainsburys we decided we fancied cake for the week. This lemon and poppy-seed loaf follows this GoodFood recipe but we added a lemon syrup before the icing to ensure a strong lemon flavour.

90ml lemon juice
100g caster sugar

Heat the lemon juice and caster sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved. While your loaf is still warm make lots of holes in the top using a cocktail stick or skewer, then pour over your lemon syrup. You can either ice your cake straight away if you want more of a drizzle effect but we let ours cool first to have a nice thick layer on top.


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I promised you last week that if I was feeling brave I would post up some pictures of me applying my make-up. By Friday I still wasn’t feeling brave but then I did my bare and nominate on Monday (which you can see here) and thought what the heck now everyone’s seen me looking awful now. So here we are, I didn’t manage to take photos of every step of the process since it was just me by myself with my tripod and shutter remote and some photos were just too flattering to share/quite often I disappeared out of shot to be an inch away from the mirror! To start with here is my finished make-up for the day, which I have labelled with some of the different steps I take.

STEP 1: I start by applying concealer where needed and depending on my weekly stress level this can be either a little or rather a lot. Next I apply my foundation with a brush all over, the shade of foundation I use is IVORY (nice and pale!) before moving onto my take on contouring.

STEP 2: Starting with a second concealer with a lighter pigment than my foundation I highlight above my cheekbones, below my brow-bones, down the centre of my nose and in the centre of my chin. Once this is blended in I apply Benefit’s High Beam illuminator in a C above my cheekbones and browbones, I used to apply this with a brush but after reading Emily Schuman’s advice on blush here I have switched to just dabbing it in with my finger tips.

STEP 3: Using my bronzer I create the contrasting shadows below my cheekbones, down the edges of my nose and under my chin. Here were some particularly bad photos where I seem to have forgotten why I was taking these pictures!

STEP 4: Next up eyebrows, which you know I take seriously. I apply the wax first with the hard angled brush before blending in the powder, I use the Light version of Benefit’s Browzing kit which I think provides enough definition for me. I like my brows to be defined but not to over-power my face! I then use the Medium/Dark Gimme Brow to add dimension to my brows which I am absolutely in love with I am having to limit myself to only using it on special days/when I go to work. I’ve since increased the number of shifts I have a week…

STEP 5: As you can see in the Before picture I generally start the day with little tired eyes which I coax out with a light and dark eyeliner on the bottom and top edges of my eye. Next I curl my eyelashes before applying my mascara, for this day I opted for Brown/Black over pure Black since I was just doing dissertation work all day. I think it works well as a daytime option when you want some definition to your eyes but still maintain a natural look. Apologies for the lack of photos here but I began to struggle to apply eye make-up and work the shutter remote at the same time whilst keeping in shot. I am one of those people who end up almost in the mirror when applying eye make-up!

STEP 6: Finally I scrub my lips, which is like a little snack since it is so tasty! Which is lucky as you can see in the photo I am not great at keeping it solely on my lips! Once I’ve cleaned off all the leftover scrub I apply a lip balm and that’s it I’m all set make-up wise for the day.


NOTE: Details of all the products I use can be found in my Beauty Basics posts (i) for face, (ii) for eyebrows, (iii) for eyes and (iv) for lips.

17 hours and counting… That’s how long my road has been without electric today and for a reason I’m unaware of. As well as messing up my day (a freezing shower after my morning spin was not fun) it has also messed with my blogging schedule. I still had a little polishing off to do on Wednesday’s post and sadly was unable to do so with no Internet at home, it was a little complex for my phone app to handle, which is what I’m using to blog now. Isn’t technology smart? So I just wanted to say sorry for the delay, I will try to post again soon and sorry for what is probably a very poor quality photograph, it’s taken on my phone in very bad lighting. Fingers crossed the power comes back on soon!

A new trend of nominations has been sweeping through social networks in recent months. It started with neck and nominate, then followed flex and nominate and now bare and nominate has arrived. Unlike previous nominations, bare and nominate is in aid of Cancer research. The nominees strip bare of their make-up, take a selfie, upload it to Facebook, Twitter etc, nominate some friends and donate £3 to Cancer research, by texting BEAT to 70099. I was nominated on Friday by my best friend Florrie. Unlike Florrie who looked gorgeous in her photo, I look like a mess; my skin is very unhappy with me currently. It started its tantrum when I used Simple make-up wipes, (they do not get on!) throw into the mix a fourth year dissertation due in two and a half weeks, along with 20 and half hours of part-time bar work and you get this state. Despite all this I wanted to do my bit, I have always meant to do something for Cancer research since my Gran was diagnosed. Fortunately she is still with us and with every donation made a little more is done to ensure others are as lucky. Bare and nominations have already helped raise over £2 million pounds for Cancer research, so despite all the mixed views on the trend, I think anything that makes people stop and donate has to be a good thing. Right now I am off to make my nominations and upload my #nomakeupselfie for the world to see.