Today I thought I'd do a post that's a bit lighter and a bit more life centred because last time I did one of these it seemed to go down quite well. I'm currently in the midst of writing up a rather tedious assignment but I still wanted to blog something for y'all.
Anyway, here's a little look at some of the miscellaneous pictures that didn't really fit in elsewhere on the blog. Enjoy!
-The most delicious Wildberry Iced Tea at Miss Clawdy with Tara and Ellen.
-A little snippet of Lush's Christmas collection for 2014. A small selection of the range is in stores now and the rest will follow in the coming weeks.
-Flowers in Spring! This is down one of the streets I often walk near where I live and I always love seeing it in Spring and Summer.
-Pinterest and reading, what I'd much rather be doing right now! #whatareassignments
-A little sneak peek of one of Mac's upcoming Christmas collections. This will either be on the blog in a video or post next month (still deciding). That lipstick though is awesome. I couldn't believe it was matte because it felt so creamy to apply.
-NZ readers, did you know you can buy Mrs Higgins cookie batter to bake?? I didn't and they're just as good as the real deal! Plus you don't have to stress out about baking perfect cookies or the cleanup after.
-Shoes in the Designer Garage Sale at Fashion Weekend. There were so many gorgeous shoes but they were all out of my price range sadly.
-What was in my University bag one day last week. Books, pens and highlighters aplenty!
Whilst thinking about my October Favourites which always get chosen in advance (if they didn't I'd never be able to make a decision) I realised that a fair few non-beauty related choices were standing out. Rather than making my October Favourites post ridiculously long with all these little extras, I decided to share them today because I couldn't just ignore 'em...
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn-Let's get this out of the way now lest this post turns into an ode to this novel. I'd been wanting to read this book for the longest time and with the movie finally out it seemed a better time than never. For me, a true mark of a good book is how quickly I can finish it. This took me just over two days. The thriller novel is so cleverly constructed and all the characters have a lot of dimension. It's easily one of the best books I have read this year (possibly ever) and i don't want to give an awful lot away but everyone needs to read this. Gone Girl is a novel that will get you thinking and perhaps questioning wider issues we witness in society and the media. Maybe it's just me missing the days of studying English Literature but this book really got me analysing the text and I love that.
The Body Shop Glazed Apple Sparkler*-In the past I've been told I could've been an extra in Twilight with my porcelain skin and the idea of adding anything sparkly to my limbs a few years ago would've been a no-go. This Christmas release from The Body Shop may be changing my mind. A couple of spritzes of this along your collarbones and limbs, if you wish, doesn't leave you looking like a member of the Cullen family. In fact, it just adds a subtle hint of shimmer, perfect for the holiday season. It's lightly scented with their new glazed apple scent which happens to smell delicious.
Frankie Spaces, Volume 2-You may have spied this in my recent book haul and it certainly didn't disappoint. If you're a fan of Frankie magazine, beautiful decor, unique spaces and the rest then you're bound to love this. Australian creatives have some gorgeous homes and studios that's for sure! One of my favourite spaces was a shared studio and living loft-style space which sadly has since been redeveloped into apartments. Anyway, if you're in NZ or Australia track this down. It's worth a read.
Rifle Paper Co Je T'aime Greeting Card-Rifle Paper Co stationery is just so stunning, we've already established this. I picked up this card with a recent spot of Christmas shopping to chill out on my DIY art wall, when that ends up happening. Foiled type, florals, French text-you can't really go wrong.
Stila Magnificent Metals Shadow in Metallic Dusky Rose-I picked this up when I had my makeup done at Mecca a few weeks back. Look at the gorgeous sparkles, and the colour! These are very much like a pressed pigment and come with a liquid dropper+tray so you can make them have the intensified, foiled look. I love to wear it lightly over the top of other eyeshadows at the moment though for something more day-friendly.
White Eye Bracelet by Jaime Ridge for Lindi Kingi-I wouldn't necessarily call myself a spiritual person but for the longest time I had an eye bracelet from Melbourne which sadly broke last year so when I saw this one locally I knew it had to be mine. If you're unfamiliar with the significance of the eye symbol, my basic understanding is that it will protect you from evil. Whether or not you believe that is up to you but I like the idea behind this.
*What have you been loving during October?
-I hope you've all had amazing weekends! Mine was basically chocka block with readings for a literature review I have to write. Sadly, it is not about novels. No I get to talk about narcissism and creative people. I also had an essay or two to finish up so basically a lot of writing went down. I did go see Gone Girl on Friday though and it was so good. It totally did the book justice and Rosamund Pike. What. A. Babe. See you cool cats on Wednesday x.
Editing Like A Boss-You may have noticed my blog photos have been looking a little bit different perhaps. While I wish I could take credit for that, I have this little guide from Nouvelle Daily to thank. I get a bit lazy in Photoshop and sometimes the automatic tools are all I utilise. Not anymore. As you can see from this post it's amazing what a difference playing with contrast and curves can make to your pictures. It's making me fall in love with editing all over again.
Flags-If you're following me on Twitter you may have seen the name 'Brooke Fraser' appearing in my feed a few times this week #sorrynotsorry. In the lead up to her new album's release next month I've been listening to Flags. This was her last album and happens to be my favourite of hers. In fact I think somewhere way back in the archives I even wrote about one of the songs. Anyway, this has been on repeat this week. I just love this record and the inspirations behind it.
Take Me To The Halloween Candy Bar-Nowhere else in the world does holidays quite like the USA, especially Halloween. Now candy bars are awesome, whatever your age. My friend had one at her 21st and you could load up Chinese takeaway boxes with lollies. It was the best. Well Emily of Cupcakes and Cashmere has a not-so-secret sweet tooth as well and shared her guide for making a Halloween Candy Bar. Hint: Lots of orange and some spooky decorations. Perhaps Hannah and I will do something similar at our next sleepover.
The Handwash To Get Your (Clean) Mitts On-It's not very often that a press release about handwash and other body products gets me excited and wishing that I could smell all the things. Well Anatomicals is launching this month in NZ and it's looking pretty promising. I've been using the hand soap* you see above over the last couple of days and it's love. It smells like passionfruit and it's pink. What more could you want?
Homeware Haulin'-Or the one where I live vicariously through Anna's John Lewis shopping. Firstly, look how gorgeous that blanket is! I'm going to blame the Frankie Spaces book and my ever-expanding home themed Pinterest board for my likeness of all things decor at the moment. It's that or my desire to be an interior designer someday. If you're in a similar frame of mind then head on over to the 'tube.
-Have the most amazing weekend guys! Despite the university business, this week has actually been rather awesome. I'm still buzzing about the Mac Christmas delivery on Wednesday. I honestly was so excited and feel so grateful whenever I get press samples to review or event invitations. You guys are to thank too because if nobody was reading my blog I'd never get opportunities like this so thank you. Assignments are leaving me feeling a little bit loopy so I'm heading to a cinema this afternoon to see Gone Girl for a bit of downtime. Other than that I think my weekend will be rather low key x.
Well what have we here? Just two of the most discussed items on beauty blogs and vlogs, some might even call them cult. See what I did there omg I am so clever. I've put them through their paces over the last month or so. One's got a massive seal of approval, the other is still pending. Read on for the final verdicts...
Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in Brunette-Now this was a bit of an impulse buy when I got my brows done last month. If it's good enough for Anna et. al, then it's good enough for me right? Well the jury's still out on this one. There's nothing wrong with the product per se, in fact if done right it looks rather amazing on. I just found this to be a tad more time consuming than say DipBrow or the Hourglass Arch Brow. Oh and it's not waterproof like the Pomade. I'm not sure with this. I like it, but I don't love it...yet.
Kevyn Aucoin Sculpting Powder in Medium-This was out of stock for an age on Cult Beauty so when I saw it was around I 1) fist-pumped for days** and 2) immediately added it to my basket and never looked back. Oh em gee, this is cheekbones in a pan. Pale ladies who just look muddy/orange with bronzer as a contour, this is your new best friend. This muted brown (taupe even) flatters paler complexions and looks so natural, just like a shadow would hitting your face. It also helps you fake a bit of a cheekbone appearance if you've got more of a moon face like me and it looks so darn subtle. Believe the hype ladies, believe the hype.
-Have you tried these products before?
*I hope you're all having fabulous weeks. What have I been up to? Lots of reading and working out the finer details of assignments. I have three due next week so it's not exactly a fun time right now. In between that fun, or lack thereof, I got to hang with Nina on Monday. We went on a little Ponsonby adventure which was fun. There was talk of cats, beauty and fashion aka the best conversation topics. Oh and I've been listening to Brooke Fraser's new song Kings & Queens on repeat. Get amongst it. x
**Not really. I am never that dramatic. Although I have been known to shriek over stunning makeup so...
When it comes to organisation, particularly planning and list-making, I love it. I'm not afraid of spontaneity but when it comes to my blog, I like to keep things rather regimented. As I have other commitments which I have to work around, this helps me to keep on top of what needs doing and what I have done for my posts. Today I thought I'd share some ways that help me keep organised with blogging. These are just some of the key things that help me. Perhaps you'll find them useful too...
Make A Schedule-This sounds obvious and if you're more of a fan of spontaneity then perhaps skip this point. Seriously, having a schedule or editorial calendar to work towards makes things a lot less stressful. I usually make mine towards the end of every month and consult the list of blog posts you see above. I always know The Week goes up on Fridays and then I save monthly favourites for the last week of the month if I can. As well as assigning posts to days, the list above helps me as I can see when I've taken photos (p), written them and the rest as well as check anything extra I may need to do. You get the idea. Schedules are the bomb.
Take Pictures In Advance-Unless I'm ridiculously busy or dealing with awful lighting, usually the latter, I always take my pictures well in advance of a post going live. #1 This means I just need to edit them and then insert them into a post. #2 If I decide I don't like pictures, which can happen from time to time, then it means I have enough time to redo them. My pictures usually always get taken on the weekend as I have classes during the week so I'm not home when the natural light is at its best usually.
Lists Are Your BFF-As you see above I have that rather snazzy notebook which contains a multitude of lists. There's blog posts, videos, products I'm trialling...even books I am reading just in case I want to feature them. Aside from blog posts, these lists are so helpful when I'm trying products out as I can decide if I want to review things, share them in favourites posts or in worst case scenarios pass them along to a friend. They also help to keep me on track with what I want to test and what needs doing in terms of my blog+YouTube videos.
Have A Backup Plan-Be flexible. That sort've contradicts what I've said above but if a post idea just doesn't feel right or isn't working out, don't stress out if you change your mind. Sometimes you may find you don't always have ideas too. Here's where the backup plan comes into play. I have a list of post ideas for when I get stuck that I can fall back on. This could be anything from a tag post, a wishlist. or perhaps just a photo diary. We all get into ruts from time to time so I highly recommend having something like this.
Always Keep Your Eyes Open-"Keep watching, because what you see can inspire you." Thanks for the wise words Grace Coddington. In seriousness be mindful of what's happening around you because it can be turned into blog content. Seasonal changes usually inspire beauty trend posts. I recently did one for Spring . If you attended an event you loved (birthday, product launch, a lunch date) or there's a holiday coming up that you could create content around use that to your advantage. Or if you're inclined to enjoy a bit of retail therapy, don't upload an Insta-haul. Save it and you can potentially turn it into another post. I am always brainstormng and thinking of things around me that can potentially turn into new posts.
*I hope this post was useful! How do you stay on top of blogging?