Perfect Valentines Day Makeup ♡

Whether your Valentines Day is spent having a fancy dinner with a special someone, or having a Gossip Girl marathon on your own, it’s nice to look nice.

Obviously, you don’t need to have a Valentine or even plans to get yourself all done up.

I’ve put together some of my favourite products that I think would make a really lovely Valentines Day makeup look.

 

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Going with the traditional colours of Valentines Day I chose lots of pinks and reds.

There’s nothing to draw the eye like a bold lip and a lashing of highlight, which are actually two of my favourite things. I’ve included the Laura Mercier illuminating tinted moisturiser, which gives the most beautiful glowy look to your skin.

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My highlight of choice, is of course the SoSu palette. I’ve mentioned it before and expressed my love for these six shades of pure shimmery heaven.

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The lipsticks I chose are;

(clockwise)

Rimmel Kate Moss lipstick shade 101

Rimmel lipstick in shade 170 Alarm

Sleek Matte Me lip cream in Birthday Suit

NYX soft matte lip cream in the shade Istanbul

Rimmel lipstick in shade Trendsetter

 

As you can see I’m a big fan of Rimmel lipsticks. They’re long lasting, smell great and super affordable. I couldn’t recommend them enough, if you’re looking to try out some new colours and don’t want to spend too much.

Well that’s it! If you have any other products you think would look great for Valentines Day, let me know. Also, comment below and let me know what your plans are (if you’ve got any?), I love reading your comments!

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My book collection and reviews

There’s nothing more relaxing than opening a really good book, and diving into it, letting it take over you brain (and your time) for a while. I have always loved reading since I was a little girl. Every Christmas my dad buys me 3 new books and encourages us to read as much as possible. I think my love of writing stemmed from there. As you can imagine, over many years of reading, I have collected quite a large number of books. I like reading all sorts of things, and have a very wide variety of books from thrillers to soppy love story books.
Pictured here is the line up of books I currently have on my bookshelf, that have been there for a while, as I go back to them regularly, to read a few pages, or review the things I have underlined. Do you do that too? I always have a pen or pencil with me when I’m reading, as I like to underline the things I find interesting.
I thought, for all the book lovers, or for those of you who don’t read very often, but are looking for some book inspiration, I would give a little review of some of my current faves.

Girl, interrupted.

 

I’m usually anti-book-to-movie nonsense, as it more often than not, ruins the image i created in my head of the characters. However, I admittedly watched this movie before I read the book and its one of my favourite movies. It follows a girl, the author of the book, Susanna Kaysen, through a difficult time of change in the late 60’s, as she struggles with mental disorders and lack of direction in her life. I loved this story so much, that I bought the book and loved that too.
There are heavier topics in this book, so if you don’t like things like that, it may not be for you.
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Bluets, by Maggie Nelson

 

I bought this book over the summer and was not at all expecting the book I got. It’s written in a kind of list format, and is all about the association the author’s life has, with the colour blue. She gives reasons, and situations in which she feels deeply connected to the colour. It’s easier to read it, than to explain it but it’s definitely worth the read.
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Looking for Alaska

 

As you can probably tell from the picture, I am a big fan of John Greens books. I’ve read all of them and can say confidently that Looking for Alaska was my favourite. This is one particular book that I would not want to see as a movie. I enjoyed creating the characters and their surroundings in my imagination. This story, follows Miles (or Pugde) as he enrolls at a boarding school and befriends some interesting characters, The Colonel, Takumi and Alaska, a beautifully unstable hurricane of a girl. To say any more would ruin the genius and the tragedy of this book. All I’m saying is read it, and you’ll know what I mean.

 

The Perks of being a wallflower

 

I feel a certain connection to this book, as I read it first when I was 15, the same age as Charlie is in this book, and was going through a rough time, as Charlie also was in this book. It breaks my heart a little bit to read this book, as each time I gain a new perspective, I see a new angle to it that I didn’t before. It’s the perfect view of teenage life, unglamourized, unromaticised and in its truest, provocative, raw and earth shattering form. I connected so personally with this book because it’s written, not like an adult looking back on their youth, but as a teenager, living in it. I think everyone should read this book, and appreciate it’s magic.

The Harry Potter Series

 

There’s something about Harry Potter that warms my heart. I read my first Harry Potter book when I was about 10 and ever since I’ve read all the books, seen all the movies and loved every second of both. There’s just something so magical (pardon the pun) about Harry Potter books, that makes you feel comfortable and relaxed. It always somehow reminds me of Christmas, although I’m not sure why. Yes the books are based around adolsecent wizards and the things they get up to, but theres so much more to these stories. Lessons like the power of friendship and the strength of family bonds. I love Harry Potter and will go to my grave saying everyone should read these books.
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Last nights makeup

Hello again!

Because I’m a complete amateur, I forgot to take a picture of my makeup without a filter last night. How smart am I?

Anyways, I thought I’d post a few of the products that I used on my face and tell you why I like them.

 

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please excuse how dirty the foundation lid is. but really, how do people keep that clean??

 

Loreal True Match foundation

I really like this foundation. This one is a few shades darker than my natural skin tone because I wear it out at night, when I have fake tan on so my face matches my body. This is super easy to blend and covers everything that I want covered. It also doesn’t feel too heavy on.

 

Rimmel Scandaleyes liner

This is perfect for thin eyeliner lines, especially for precision when you’re doing winged eyeliner. It’s very inky and stays on all night. I think I got it for €5.99.

 

Sleek highlighting palette in ‘Solstice’

My fave fave fave highlight! It’s just so freaking pretty, in the packaging and on your face. I love strong highlight and this is perfect for building up, whether you just want a dusting on the top of your cheekbones or you want full on glittery magic. It’s so beautiful and the pinky toned one is my favourite. There are 3 powder ones and 1 creamy kind of one (top left).

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NYX matte bronzer in medium

Supposedly a dupe for Benefits hula bronzer, but I haven’t ever tried that one. This however, I love. It adds such colour and depth to your makeup. I love a bit of bronzer to wake your face up and this does the job for sure.

 

Mac lipstick in Whirl

My favourite lipstick. I always find myself reaching for this without a second thought, because it’s just the perfect nude for every outfit. It’s a little bit more expensive than the rest of the makeup, but every girl needs a nude lipstick. If you’re looking for a good one, try this.

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Peep it’s me being photobombed by my best friends legs. 

 

Well that’s it for now! I hope you enjoyed reading and if you want to ask anything about the products or want to give me feedback, please feel free to comment below. Hope you all have an amazing week!

 

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New camera!

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Before I start making excuses for no posts this week (here comes the excuse) I’ve been very busy with school and I just today, got a new phone. Yay for higher quality pictures!

So because I couldn’t do the post I was going to do (still to come this week) I thought I’d just do a little update to let you know that I am working on new stuff.

Now that I’ve got a higher quality camera, I can’t wait to start working on blogposts I’ve wanted to do for a while now. I’m excited to start taking better pictures and therefore making better blogposts! I hope I’ll be able to start posting twice a week on here and I’m going to make time even when my school schedule gets a little crazy. I love this blog and there’s so many fun posts yet to come. Watch this space!

Signing off,

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Netflix shows you NEED to watch

Coming into the colder seasons of Autumn/Winter, I know that if theres one thing to do on long dark evenings, it’s find a really great TV show. I decided to list a few of my favourite shows to maybe give you some inspiration for new TV material and let you know what I thought. So enjoy!

 

1. Breaking Bad

Probably my favourite show of all time. My dad actually put me onto it about a year ago and after one episode I knew I had been late to the party once again. I was hooked! I absolutely adore this show. It has everything you want from a series. No shortage of drama, crime, family stuff, love, loss and incredible characters you fall in and out of love with. I recommend this to anyone at all, although there are some violent scenes so if you’re very young or don’t like that sort of thing, maybe not for you.

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2. How to get away with murder

This show is amazing, There are currently 3 seasons, but only one is available on Irish Netflix so I’ve been watching on another website. Viola Davis and all the rest of the actors on this show are just fantastic and the plot never gets boring.
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3. American Horror Story
I’m a massive fan of scary things. I adore Halloween and horror movies and scaring myself. American Horror Story has been one of my favourite shows for the last few years and this most recent season is slowly becoming one of my favourites so far. I would have to give season 4, Freakshow, my number one spot as its just insane to watch. This show has made Sara Paulson, one of my favourite actresses. Plus Evan Peters is gorgeous which is a hell of a bonus.

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4. Orange is the new black

Like probably everyone on the planet, I’ve watched and loved this show since the beginning. The character development in this show keeps you coming back and I could write a full blogpost on the final episode of this season (not spoiling anything for those of you who live under a rock and HAVEN’T seen it (lol just kidding)). It’s funny, it’s dramatic, it deals with serious issues that most shows wouldn’t dare tackle, and it shows women in a true, pure, raw and non sugar coated light. Props to you, creators of this show. Serious props. But we NEED to talk about that season finale because I have WORDS to say to you.

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5. Gossip Girl

This show is just a classic. Thank God Netflix has the entire series, as I find myself every now and then going back to watch an episode or two. Gossip Girl pretty much has everything, fashion, hot guys, family drama and New York city. If you like light hearted TV watching I highly recommend.

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6. Pretty little liars
Again, if you’re into drama TV with teenagers being the main characters, you will love this show. Pretty Little Liars is definitely heavier than Gossip Girl, being that a lot of it is based around murder and being stalked. It’s just a really great show and keeps you interested all the time. It’s ending soon and I am devastated to say the least.

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7. Jane the virgin
I really liked this show! I think i watched the full first season in about a week. I adore Gina Rodriguez who plays Jane, the main character. She’s hilarious and the show is so funny. If you like light hearted funny TV this is for you.

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8. Stranger Things
This one is obvious if you’re a frequent reader of my blogposts because I already did a full post about why it was the show of the year. I absolutely love this show. Everything about it. The actors are incredible, the plot is so intriguing, To read more reasons click here
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9. Skins
I started this show under the order of my friend, at the start of the summer and it became my summer show. I finished all the seasons (although seasons 1&2 were my favourite). This is an english show and is basically just a mess of teenagers having sex, doing drugs and getting into trouble. I fell in love with one particular character, Effy Stonem, who is the misunderstood quiet girl with a bad streak. I love Skins. If you’re looking for something that’ll give you a proper insight into teenagers lives, without it being glamourised by designer fashion and americanised television, this is the one.
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10. Full House

Probably the opposite to Skins, but Full House is just one of those warm, sugary sweet adorable family shows that always makes you feel good. I’ve watched Full House since I was little and it being on Netflix is a blessing as I always find myself going back to it when I want to reminisce or just watch something really light hearted and cute.

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Well that’s it from me! 10 Netflix shows for you to start binging when the weather gets cold and the evenings get longer. If you have seen any of these shows, or are planning to go watch them after reading this, please let me know in the comments. Happy Sunday!

Signing off,

alana x

How to: Take care of your hair

Hello!

How is all of your Autumn season going? Good I hope!
Today I thought I’d maybe do a little guide on how to take care of your hair properly.
I’ve got incredibly thick hair and I’ve been adding blonde highlights to my naturally mousy brown hair since I was about 14. These two things combined can lead to the ends becoming quite dry and frizzy at times.
In this post I thought I’d give you some tips on how I take care of my hair.

 

Don’t over wash!

I usually wash my hair 3-4 times a week. Usually on a Sunday night (before school on Monday), a Tuesday, a Thursday and again on a Friday if I really need to, or I’m going out and I want freshly washed hair. So basically to shorten that, every other day lol.
Washing your hair too much can actually do the opposite to good, and dry it out.

 

Don’t over heat!

I tend to stay away from hairdryers and straightners most days. My hair is naturally wavy and sometimes frizzy so I don’t blow-dry it. I prefer to let it dry itself. As for straighteners and curlers etc, overuse of these do damage to your hair, so do your hair a favour and take a break! If you’re likely to use a straightener every day, give it a rest and try to use it maybe twice or 3 times a week tops.

Coconut oil.

A lifesaver. I will get to the other oil i use in a moment but for now, coconut oil is the bomb. After hearing all the raving about it I decided to go out and pick up a tub myself. I admittedly was skeptical putting such a thick, oily substance in my hair, thinking it was definitely going to weigh it down and make it greasy but it didn’t!
The oil practically melts on your hands so I basically just take a good blob of it and work it through my dry hair, from about the middle section to the ends. Stay away from the roots to avoid looking greasy. Leave the oil on for as long as you want, I find the longer the better.
Then just wash it out in the shower! It made my hair feel amazing.

If you needed another reason, coconut oil is usually only about €3 and lasts months.

Argan oil.

This helps with the frizzys. Just run a tiny bit thorough the ends of your hair after you wash it and it tames the frizz every time.

 

Regular trims

It’s a good idea to have your hair trimmed by a hairdresser about every 3 months or so. I personally suffer from that “i don’t want to go to the hairdresser because I want to keep my hair long” syndrome that so many of us do. However, i’ve learned that having your hair trimmed regularly can actually help it grow much faster! Who would’ve thought.

 

Eat Healthily

This one, although it sounds irrelevant, is super important. Eating properly is crucial to give your hair the right amount of vitamins it needs to grow and be strong. Eat a balanced diet and include lots of Vitamin C, which strengthens hair. Vitamin C can be found in fresh fruit like oranges and other citrus fruits like grapefruits or lemons.

Guitar hero?

So last Christmas, I took a notion (like i regularly do) and convinced my dad to buy me a guitar. It didn’t take much convincing actually. When I announced that I wanted to learn the guitar he was quite happy to buy me one.
You see, I’ve never been much of an instrument girl.
Every child in Ireland has learned how to play the tin whistle. It’s like learning to tie your shoes. You just learn it in Primary school, play it now and again at a wedding or a carol service and then pretty much never again.
When I was about 10, my mum signed me and my sister up for piano lessons. We went for about 6 months and to this day, I can only play one song on the piano.
My dad bought me a beautiful guitar. It wasn’t a fancy one or anything but it looked stunning to me, all new and glossy. I sat it proudly on the stand that came with it, in the living room and marvelled at it. Days passed. More days passed. Weeks passed. MONTHS PASSED.
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Don’t try and tell me you’ve never done that sort of thing. It’s not that I didn’t want to start learning the guitar, its just that I didn’t know where to start. I procrastinated it so much that I let the whole year go by without learning a single chord.
THAT IS until about 2 weeks ago. I finally plucked (get it?) up the courage to dive in and it honestly is just as difficult as I thought it would be.
I found some really helpful tutorials on YouTube and managed to teach myself 3 chords, an A, an E minor and a D. I was chuffed not going to lie.
But now I’m stuck in a bit of a rut. It’s not easy teaching yourself.
So i thought maybe some of you people might have suggestions?
Do you know how to play guitar? And if so did you teach yourself?
Do you have any tips on how to make it easier?
I’d love to know!
for now!
signing off,
alana.