Last week I headed off to Wellington for a not-so-official long weekend of sorts. It was awesome and given that I was heading away, I decided to take some beauty products I'd not had a chance to use away with me. I feel like when you're away it's the best time to try new things, whether that be beauty or whatever else. You're usually so zen that a step out of your comfort zone is no big deal. Maybe that's just me, but holidays turn me into my much more chilled out self. So what did I take away with me aside from an abundance of lip products? Read on..
MAC Matte Lipstick in Mehr-Reading this name just makes me want to say 'Meh'. Although this colour is far from meh. After seeing Fiona swatching this during a Mac session I felt obliged to throw one in to my little black bag as well. It's described as a dirty blue pink. Resisting the urge to make a bad makeup joke here. It reminds me a little of Syrup x Mac, just with less of a sheen to it. It's such a gorgeous colour and I'm obsessed with it.
Clinique Pop Lip Colour+Primer in Melon Pop*-Melon Pop has been on my wishlist for the longest time so it's getting a good thrashing now it's in my makeup bag. I was expecting this to be more of a pinky nude but it's definitely more on the coral side of things, as the name would suggest. Clinique's pop lip colours are hydrating and nicely pigmented. After the initial gloss wears off, the colour stays put so you're left not having to reapply. If you're feeling coordinated, you could also pair this with its matching blush like I did yesterday.
Fairy Drops Scandal Queen Mascara-The wait for this mascara to dry up before I allowed myself to open this was long. It was certainly worth the wait though, because I think, and this is a bold claim, this may have changed my tune on waterproof mascaras. It holds a curl like nothing else and separates your lashes so freakin' well. If you can get your hands on this, because it is a little hard to track down right now, grab it. You won't regret it.
Maybelline Baby Lips Crystal Balm in Pink Quartz-There's probably no difference, aside from the packaging but I swear the American Baby Lips are much different to the ones available here in NZ. I've been wearing this colour as a base underneath lipsticks. There isn't much more to it really but I find these lip balms are inexpensive and not as drying as some of the other cheaper lip balms out there.
Smashbox Photo Finish Primer Water*-After spying this in a few of my friend's makeup bags the temptation to experiment with it myself was imminent. It's early days with this one but I think I prefer it to my All Nighter Setting Spray. The Primer Water is a fine mist that sets makeup in place while also adding a bit of dewiness to the skin. It sets down really fast as well and is just lush to use. Y'know those products that have the whole ritual with them that feels luxurious? This is one of those.
NARS Satin Lip Pencil in Rikugien-Isn't this just the cutest lil' thing ever? I had actually dismissed this colour, which came in the Sephora VIB birthday set this year, but looks can be deceiving. Rikugien, strange name and all is such a lovely shade. It's the perfect, rosy pink. Very Estee Lalonde-esque. I find these shades are great when you can't really wear a bold lip but want to wear something a bit more exciting than a nude. As it is a satin lip pencil, the lasting power isn't amazing but it's so easy to reapply. I may have to repurchase this in the full size when it runs out.
What are your makeup must-haves when you are traveling?
Whilst it's not quite October yet, it's never too early to start thinking about what books I want to read during the month. I've recently come back from a weekend away where books were bought and books that I had ordered+requested were waiting for me. Don't be surprise if this list extends itself. On with the reads...
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas*-I'm Sarah J Maas series-jumping here, because I still don't have books two and three of the Throne of Glass series. It's been a little while since I read a fantasy book so it's high time one makes its way into my hands again. A Court of Thorns and Roses is said to be a reworking of Beauty and the Beast, one of my favourite stories so I am looking forward to getting into this.
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes*-Now this is the book I am currently reading and I'm aware I am super late to the bandwagon here but omg, it's so good!** It tells the story of Lou, a woman who has just lost her job and has no idea what her next move is, and Will, a man who had it all but his world was forever changed after a motorcycle accident. Their paths cross, and it's safe to say they are not the same ever again. I don't want to give away too much and I'm only halfway through it but it's such a fantastic read.
The Potion Diaries by Amy Alward-Ellen included this book in her August Favourites video with Tara so I promptly added it to my request list at the local library. I'll be honest, I'm not entirely sure what this one is about but I know it's fantasy based, possibly slightly dystopian. That could be completely wrong. Whoops. It has good reviews from Zoella and Sarah J Maas though so I have high hopes.
Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon-I finished this book towards the end of last week and was really impressed by it. It's another book that explores mental illness and anxiety, to an extent really well and doesn't glorify things. Madeline is allergic to the outside world and hasn't stepped outside in years. She only interacts with her Mum, a carer and a psychiatrist of sorts. Then she meets Olly and her world changes. Are you noticing a theme with this month's books? I found the major plot point of this book really predictable but I was also like no that can't happen, so when it did my mind was blown. YA+contemporary literature lovers, pick this up.
Us by David Nicholls-My last foray into the Booker Prize longlist was unsuccessful so I'm hoping this goes a bit better. I've not read One Day, also by Nicholls but I know a lot of people love that book so I'm hoping this one is great as well. It tells the story of a husband and wife whose relationship is in a less than stable state, and their son, about to embark on a new journey to university. In a last-ditch effort to bring them back together, the father books a holiday for the three of them. Just reading the blurb is giving me major Nick Hornby vibes so again, I'm looking forward to getting into this.
-What have you been reading lately?
**Y'know when the text language and the exclamation marks come out that the excitement is real.
Well here we are again with another round of snap happiness. Y'know how this works by now. The last few weeks have been quite busy as I've been working a bit, preparing to re-sit my driver's license test, heading away for a short-break at the end of this week among other things. Busy times, although for once I'm not feeling too daunted by it. Long may it last. Anyway, here's what I have snapped with my girlboss camera over the last week..
(Above)-I've always loved shadows. I'm going to hold Peter Pan accountable for this, and also that scene in A Series of Unfortunate Events when they're making shadow art in the sheet-fort they make at Count Olaf's. So when I was heading out one day last week and the sun was shining, I decided to snap my shadow.
-I hung out with Fiona last week which was an awesome time. We always have the best fun when we're together. We headed to Dear Jervois for lunch which I'd never visited and oh my gosh it was amazing. From the decor with major #lifegoal+Pinterest vibes, to this utterly amazing muesli bowl I had. You have to visit it someday! I'll definitely be heading here again.
-If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen that I'm doing a giveaway to win a copy of Kristina Webb's upcoming book (out Monday in NZ), Color Me Creative. From the snippets I have seen on Instagram it looks amazing. Here's the link to my giveaway and I'd love it if you entered! There's two to give away and I'm looking forward to seeing what my Kiwi followers come up with. Get creative people!
-I watched Submarine on Friday and it was brilliant. So much aesthetic goodness and that cinematography was top notch. Richard Ayoade is a wizard. Seriously, I wouldn't be surprised if he'd escaped from Hogwarts to join the Muggles.
-Watching Episode #1 of Alexa's series on the Future of Fashion for British Vogue. I loved seeing her book of polaroids and other mementoes from her modeling days.
-I've not even read The Magic of Tidying or whatever that book's called but I may not need to. In a spur of the moment thing I completely cut back my bag of 'products to try' and also minis and things to use on the go or take traveling. Yes, I was rather proud of myself.
-A little sneak peek inside Fiona's makeup kit for when she does makeup and hair for brides or women who want to be glammed up. PS-I'm biased but she is pretty darn pro at what she does.
*Have the greatest weekends everyone! As you read this I will be on a bus en route to Palmerston North, or Shaaanxo's hometown which you overseas folk probably know it as. I'm just there for the day as I have family there so I thought I'd take advantage of being a bit closer to where they live to go visit. This weekend I'll be exploring Wellington City. There's a couple of things on my agenda; Six Barrel Soda Co. and visiting the WWI exhibit at Te Papa. Oh-and Cuba Street+Fidels Milkshakes are bound to happen as well. If you have any Wellington recommendations, tweet them to me @nanawintourblog.
Another month, another rather early dose of September Favourites goodness. For once I was very decisive when it came to compiling this list for the blog. There's a couple of repeat offenders in the mix as well as some new loves, both beauty and non-beauty. Here's what took my fancy in September..
bareMinerals Pop of Passion Lip Oil Balm in Punch Pop-I'm cheating a bit here as this was only purchased last week but I love it so much and felt it deserved an inclusion. These new lip balms from bareMinerals are super pigmented but you can easily sheer them out with your finger. These contain passionfruit seed oil and Vitamin E and they're so moisturising. Seriously, they're putting most of my other lip balms to shame. I highly recommend these if you want something hydrating with a punch of vibrant colour for your pout.
Daisy Dream x Marc Jacobs-This fragrance has been on high rotation this month, probably because it's been living in my satchel for the majority of September. I've just noticed this was in my September Favourites last year as well, deja vu much? There's something about fruity, slightly floral fragrances that just screams Spring and Summer to me. It's such a vibrant, uplifting fragrance. I love it. PS-The newer version of this, Daisy Dream Forever is worth a spritz too.
Revitalash Advanced Eyelash Conditioner*-It's been around two months now since I started using Revitalash and while I was skeptical as to its effectiveness at first, I really think it's working its magic. For those not in the know, Revitalash is a rather popular lash serum on the NZ market. It's hard for me to tell if it's made my lashes thicker, because I already have quite thick lashes, but it's definitely lengthened them. They feel a lot softer too, although maybe that's my imagination. I'm going to do a review of this sometime around the three or four month mark so keep an eye out for it.
Peter Thomas Roth Pumpkin Enzyme and Cucumber Gel Masks-One of my friends (shoutout to M if you're reading) got me the mini mask set from Sephora for my birthday and I've become obsessed with these two masks. The Pumpkin Enzyme mask is quite exfoliating, so it's great when your skin needs a good ol' clean and refresh. It seems almost brightening in a way as well so it's great for dull skin. The Cucumber Gel mask on the other hand will be your BFF in times of need, i.e. when a planet sized blemish decides to move in on your face. It's really cooling too which I love.
Australis Metallix Shadows in Gold Gaga and Pearl Jammin'-Now these have definitely made an appearance on my favourites before. Possibly more than once. These incredibly pigmented, buttery cream eyeshadows set down to leave your lids looking shimmery, sparkly and fabulous. Seriously, they're gorgeous and they're so long-wearing. I'm obsessed with these eyeshadows and I always get asked what's on my eyes when I'm wearing one. If you're in New Zealand or Australia, go give these a swatch and/or buy a couple. You won't regret it.
Submarine by Joe Dunthorne-This was easily my favourite book and also film of the month. I've already talked about it a bit on the blog this month so I won't ramble on too much. This novel is brilliant, raw, and utterly hilarious. If you're a fan of Nick Hornby or Stephen Chbosky then I think you'll enjoy this book.
III x JoJo-Everyone's favourite '04/05 teen queen JoJo is back with a new EP, which I believe is a snippet of the songs we can expect from her upcoming album. It's so freakin' good guys. It's hard to pick a standout track because they're all awesome. In terms of music-I've also been liking Miley Cyrus' new album that she dropped online and Vampire Weekend. The latter seems to always make a reappearance on my playlists at this time of year.
-What have you been loving during September?
At the height of the European Summer when I saw many a beauty blogger mentioning the Virgin Mojito products from The Body Shop, my eyes turned into heart emojis, much like the ones included in the latest Snapchat update. Well, on October 5th they'll finally be available in the Southern Hemisphere. Can I get an amen? They're refreshing, delectable and bound to make a good impression on many a bathroom shelf. They are limited edition though so if you want them you're gonna have to move fast..
Virgin Mojito Body Scrub*-Out of all the Virgin Mojito products, this is definitely going to be the one I
run walk briskly to The Body Shop to grab a backup of. It has a really interesting texture and is more of a jelly with the scrub itself suspended in it. If you're like me, you'll also imagine that angelic sound effect (y'know the one whenever someone opens something iconic/important on TV shows or in a movie) whenever you remove the lid. It smells good enough to drink. Seriously. I use scrubs year-round to combat the dry patches I tend to get around my elbows and ankles and The Body Shop's are my favourite. If you buy anything from this range, go for this.
Virgin Mojito Shower Gel*-After the body scrub, this would probably be my second favourite product from the new range. I'm sure the scent comes into it but this shower gel feels so cooling and refreshing on the skin. Combine this with a loofah and you have a match made in shower heaven.
Virgin Mojito Body Splash*-If the name of this product plus the packaging alone aren't enough to entice you, I'm not sure what will be. This is essentially a liquid perfume or body mist if you will. I thought it was going to be quite messy to apply but it really isn't. I cup some of the liquid in my hand and then pat it onto my limbs and pulse points. Like the previous two products this smells absolutely amazing and I think this will be great in Summer to combat the sometimes not so lovely sunscreen smell.
-Are you excited for the Virgin Mojito range? What's on your wishlist?
*PR Samples but as always all love of delicious smelling products and thoughts are my own.
The Alexa Docu-Series: That quote above is Christopher Kane on Alexa Chung and her talented ways. I jest, it was actually about creatives within the fashion industry. Seriously though, British Vogue were on to a winner when they paired up with Alexa to create a documentary series on YouTube about all things fashion. The aim is to challenge the common misconception that fashion is a vapid and laughable thing and if the first episode was anything to go by, they're well on the way to achieving exactly that. If you want to watch the first episode you can check it out here.
Feeling Fruity: Etsy has often been one of my favourite sites for its unique, handmade wares. It's the best place to find a variety of gifts or treats for yourself, particularly when it comes to anything pop culture. Today though I want to share the cutest stationery I found from the Brazilian store, Studio Matte. Pictured are her fruity bookmarks, which I actually found on a Buzzfeed post a while back. There's also some rad metallic notebooks and peony prints too. Check the store out here and if you want a preview of my order, they've 'grammed it .
Almond Milk that tastes drinkable: For a while now I've wondered if I have a slight dairy allergy because soy milk and almond milks+other nut milks seem to not make me feel ick. Sorry if that was TMI. Anyway a few weeks back I grabbed a carton of So Good's Almond Milk with Vanilla from the supermarket and it is delicious. It's not too sweet but it just gives the milk that extra hint of flavour it needs sometimes for things like hot drinks. It's relatively inexpensive and tastes great. I hope they don't discontinue it because I rather like it.
Riley Marie: I'm going to be making a post about Booktubers I rate soon but today I wanted to share with you Riley's channel. She's an American book lover and enjoys fantasy YA books + YA fiction in general. She does some really awesome tags and her videos are always really fun to watch. Her recommendations are great too. Definitely check her channel out+subscribe if you haven't already.
*Have an awesome weekend guys. This week's been fab-the highlight being hanging with Fiona and talking about our favourite thing (makeup). We also went to Dear Jervois where I had the most amazing muesli bowl on earth for lunch, complete with strawberries and edible flowers. I also went to an event for Auckland Fair which was fun too. More on that soon. This weekend I'm going to my favourite local cafe, sleeping in and making a to-do list for when I'm in Wellington next week. Food+cafe+things to see/do recommendations are welcome! x
There's not a beauty or book post on this corner of the interwebs today. Are you surprised? I've been wanting to do a post for ages now about the bits 'n bobs you might spy in the background of my blog+Instagram photos. The photography side of blogging is something I really enjoy and I love composing different setups and incorporating various things into each shot. A couple of years back I used to shoot beauty products on patterned backgrounds but I found they often tended to distract from the product so nowadays I will do things like show a corner of a print and then objects in the background. It's all about how you compose shots+what perspective you use and so on as well. Side note: I have to give credit to Shauna and Kate for being the still life photography queens and constantly inspiring me to up my game. Anyway, on with the props..
I was gonna say we have recurring objects here but let's be real, they're all recurring. Books or magazines with attractive spines, covers and editorial imagery can look great in your photos. With objects like these I try to look for things that are complementary colour-wise to whatever the main focal point of my images are. Sometimes I forget though and will subconsciously group together objects of similar colour. I often collect cute little perfume cards or bookmarks to use as..bookmarks. Funny that. These also work perfectly in book photos. Mine are mainly from Etsy or independent sellers but things like perfume cards can be found in most department stores.
This might have to be my favourite set of props because they're all relatively easy to acquire and/or make yourself. The two printed pages are actually free posters or calendars from Frankie and Yen magazine. They're perfect for adding a hint of pattern or colour to an otherwise simple image. You can also reuse them as wrapping paper or on a moodboard later on. That map you see was found in an information centre in Sydney. Don't discount info centres because they're great for things like that, as are museums and art galleries which often have complimentary or inexpensive cards to take away. The dotted paper was just a scrap of paper I cut up and dotted with a gold felt tip pen. Simple. I feel like stationery or cute notebooks look fab in the background of pictures so I whip out my supply. Kikki K, Nouvelle Daily and Rifle Paper Co. are my go-to's for rad notebooks. Oh-and that peony photo is one of my Instagrams from Print Society but you could always just print yours out on photo paper.
Last but not least we have the 'things I found and liked in my space' series. These are all things that you might already have or can acquire easily. Side note: Mix and match your props to suit your blog. If food is more your thing, why not throw some things in the background like the tools you use in cooking or a gorgeous cookbook cover? Here we have more stationery bits: shoutout to washi tape, Kikki K pens and that Rifle Paper Co. notepad. Seeing as my blog does focus on beauty every now and again I like to incorporate beauty products into the backgrounds of some of my shots, both for the blog and Instagram. If they're housed inside pretty packaging like these ones I feel like it makes images that bit more enticing. Another thing I am a big fan of using and working into photos are magazine pages. Again they just add a lil' something to pictures. I often tear out images to use in photos, on moodboards, in my journals etc rather than just binning magazines I'm finished with.
So there we have it. Sorry this post ended up being quite lengthy! Thinking about props for my photos is something I love so I wanted to make sure I covered everything. If you have any questions about anything in this post, please leave them in the comments and I will get back to you.
*Do you incorporate props into your blog photos? What ones do you like to use?
If there's one beauty brand who is always on fire with their releases it has to be Mac. This year though it feels like they've really upped their game with innovative new foundations, liquid lipsticks and a tonne of new, vibrant shades. Much like Alix from I Covet Thee, Mac is one of those brands I kinda go through phases with and it's safe to say that right now I am in the midst of an epic one...
Mac Viva Glam Lipstick x Miley Cyrus*-This is a big claim but if there's one lipstick you buy this year, get this one. I was so excited when it arrived that I removed my standard nude lipstick and went out wearing this instead. Miley's latest lip colour for Mac is filling the hole left behind by Lady Danger (RIP bae) and I love it for that. As it's an amplified finish it's a vibrant colour and I'm sure it's going to get a thrashing in many a girl's bags this Summer. Orangey-reds just scream Summer and warmer weather to me. PS: All the funds from Mac's Viva Glam lipsticks and lipglasses go towards their Aids Fund so not only are you getting fab new lip products, you're also doing a good deed.
Mac Giambattista Valli lipstick in Tats*, limited edition-Now I feel bad showing you this because I have the feeling it may be sold out or not on counters anymore. This collection had a very limited availability in New Zealand so it wouldn't surprise me. Mac tend to do one or two collections a year in collaboration with designers and the Giambattista Valli collection consisted of a range of lipsticks and a lipglass I believe. Tats is a vibrant fuschia and given I love bright pink lipsticks it's right up my street. This one's a matte but seriously you wouldn't know it. It's one of the most comfortable, non-drying matte lipsticks I own. If you can still find this you should get your hands on it but if not, try colours like Candy Yum Yum or Impassioned. They're not identical but they are similar.
Mac Viva Glam Lipglass x Miley Cyrus*-This lipglass is designed to accompany Miley's matching lipstick and has pink and gold sparkle throughout. I've worn this over the top of the new lipstick and loved the way it looks. Mac's glosses are known for being tackier which means they stay put a lot longer than most glosses so this one stuck around for a good two or three hours. It probably would've been longer if I'd not been eating and drinking but I still think that's pretty impressive for a gloss. Colour-wise it's quite pigmented so you could get away with wearing this on its own. From the swatches on Temptalia's blog it looks pretty rad alone actually.
Mac Studio Waterweight Foundation in NC20*-I got to play with this foundation at Mac's AW15 preview last month but it was embargoed for a while so I'm really excited to finally be talking about it. Stylist magazine dubbed it the potential foundation to end all foundations, and from the Mac face charts at NZFW it seems the pro artists are huge fans of it. It's a super lightweight foundation and feels more like a serum on the skin. I'm going to do a full review of this once I've had a chance to play properly but from the quick experiment I did with it on Friday I was so impressed. It felt like I had nothing on my skin and it was so subtle. I may have to get the matching brush to apply this with as well. We'll see if I can control myself..
Mac Fix+ Spray in Coconut, limited edition-I couldn't find these sprays anywhere online so I'm not sure if they were exclusive to physical Mac stores and counters or what. They were released last month in NZ so they may still be around. This Fix+ is in a matte bottle with a rather exotic, coconut fragrance. There were a few other different ones released-the rose and cucumber ones tempted me as well. Fix+ is one of those multitaskers that aren't really essential but are really useful. I use mine pre-makeup, post makeup to set things down+add a bit of glow and even on eyeshadow brushes for a more intense wash of colour.
-Have you picked up anything new from Mac recently? If not, what are your favourite Mac products?
Another week, another fortnight's worth of photos. It's been a slight rollercoaster of a fortnight. I've been working quite a bit and just dealing to some life things. Nothing overly exciting. I did make time to head along to a blog event last week though, more on that in a second, and of course there is always time for delicious food. Again, more on that in a second. It's time to let the pictures start talking..
(Above)-Venue snaps from the Roxy on Fort Lane for the Lush Bazaar. Beauty bloggers, vloggers and media were treated to an exclusive look at their upcoming Christmas collection. It was a fun time and it was great to see Madi, Hannah, Laura, Megan, Angie and Meagan there. The Christmas products look so exciting too! I still can't show you anything just yet but once I'm allowed to talk about it you'll be the first to know.
-Amazing gelato from Giapo on Queen Street in Auckland. This one is hokey pokey (a quintessential New Zealand flavour) with hokey pokey pieces inside and dark chocolate dip+hokey pokey pieces on the outside. It was so freakin' good. If you're ever in Auckland I highly recommend you go here.
-A stack of blue books I photographed for my book Instagram. It's interesting to me, or perhaps just an awesome coincidence that blue is my favourite colour and a lot of my favourite books are also blue.
-A snapshot from the Kate Spade Places To Go, People To See book. If you like stunning visuals you need to track this book down.
-Saturday vibes with the newest issue of Yen and a mini bottle of the new Vanilla milk from Lewis Road Creamery. The verdict: It's good but I still think the chocolate milk they did is nicer.
*Have an awesome weekend everyone! I'm looking forward to catching up with my friend Amy and also a dinner with the family+Italian food. I've been listening to heaps of Amy Winehouse music lately so her cd's going to be on high rotation at some point too. Have a good one-and I will see you all on Monday with a yet to be decided post. The joy of having to move my blog calendar around slightly. See y'all then though.
September's rolled around extremely fast which means it's time to share another reading list on the ol' blog. I'm on a bit of a book buying blitz for the time being, largely because my TBR was getting out of control so aside from the odd essential purchase, expect to see a fair few library books around these parts instead. This month it's all about novels with a sprinkling of non fiction in there for good measure. Sometimes I go through a phase where I only want to read memoirs and then I go the other extreme and only want to read novels. The latter is certainly happening at the moment. Anyway without further ado, here's the contents of my September reading list..
You Deserve A Drink by Mamrie Hart-I really have Joan Rivers and Grace Helbig to thank for the discovery of Mamrie Hart. She's one entertaining lady and she makes a rather extraordinary cocktail, if her videos are anything to go by. You Deserve A Drink is presented as a book of boozy misadventures and tales of debauchery. To accompany each story there's a cocktail so if you wanted you could become the Julie and Julia equivalent of cocktail creation. Drink responsibly kids. I'm really looking forward to starting this and am expecting hilarity.
Submarine by Joe Dunthorne-This book was recommended by Emma of ohflowerchild and I am so glad she mentioned it because this is easily one of my favourite reads of the year. Joe Dunthorne's narrative style reminds me a bit of Nick Hornby so maybe that's why I was so taken by this book. Anyway, Submarine tells the story of Oliver Tate, a British high school student in the midst of his GCSE's and on the path to understanding the complexities of the teenage girl brain, or in his case Jordana's mind. Each chapter is constructed as a diary-like entry so it's a quick read. This book is so hilarious though and at times a bit sad but the dialogue and Oliver's thought process were so entertaining to discover. I highly recommend you give this one a read if you haven't already done so.
You're Never Weird On The Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day*-This book came to my attention thanks to the wondrous corner of the internet that is Buzzfeed. Felicia is a self-described digital misfit who is at home in the lands of Buzzfeed and Goodreads book clubs. Can you see why this one sounds right up my street? I think I'll read this one after I Was Here, because the tone of that book makes me think I'll need something uplifting to follow on from it.
I Was Here by Gayle Forman-I've read none of Gayle Forman's books despite owning two of them and having this one out from the library so I am amending that this month. The plot of this book sounds similar (ish) to All The Bright Places so if you enjoyed that then this may appeal. It also has positive reviews from Stephen Chbosky and Sarah Dessen which I'm taking as a good sign.
-What do you plan on reading during September?
I am often asked by friends, family and readers what products I'd recommend they buy from a range of categories. It's primarily beauty but I do get the odd outfit query via various messaging outlets as well. Now Lily of Lily Pebbles blog created the categories and this non-tag of sorts over on her blog and it was one I wanted to quiz myself on and see others answer as well so here you go. Here are my go-to beauty and fashion brands for a range of answers. Enjoy!
Makeup brand to use: This is a tough one, and I cannot think of any makeup brand that does every single product to my liking. I'm a fussy one, not gonna lie.. If I did have to pick one though I'd go with Nars. I cannot think of a product I have tried from them that has disappointed me, with the exception of Orgasm blush. Their concealer, eyeshadow primer and newest foundation are my must-haves.
Mascara to wear: Mascaras are something I alternate a lot but at the moment my favourite has to be the Covergirl Full Lash Bloom mascara. Not only is it relatively cheap and cheerful, it really makes your lashes look amazing. It holds a curl so well and it's one of those mascaras I can see myself repurchasing again. Special mention has to go to to Benefit's Roller Lash mascara as well. I am yet to repurchase it but I want to so badly.
Skincare item to use: Pixi Glow Tonic. Thanks Caroline Hirons and all the UK blogging set for raving about this product. The first reason I love using this is the scent. There's just something about it that makes me want to bottle it up and wear it as a fragrance. It's also great at reviving the skin and leaving it looking ten times better.
Highstreet store to shop from: We don't have a bunch of highstreet stores in New Zealand and I yearn for the day H&M, Zara and Urban Outfitters set up shop here. So with that being said I have to choose Topshop. Their Jamie jeans are my favourite jeans I have ever owned. They also design such versatile pieces that never seem to look identical to what other brands are releasing. Their collaborations are usually pretty on-point as well, like their Kendall+Kylie and Kate Moss collections.
Makeup brush brand: Easy peasy, Real Techniques. Their brushes are designed with the average woman in mind and are so lovely to work with. They're synthetic, cruelty-free and such good quality. I've had a lot of my brushes for nearly two years now and they're still going strong. I love that their brushes are so versatile too and can be used for a range of purposes.
Lipstick to wear every day: Definitely one of my Mac nudes. Yep, nudes plural. I have a lipstick problem okay? On a day to day basis I alternate between Syrup, Peach Blossom and Patisserie.
Eyeshadow palette: Urban Decay's Naked 2 Basics. My answer would've been my Mac palette but I've downsized it a lot lately. More on that another time... This palette is so versatile and the mattes work with virtually every single eyeshadow I try them with. It's such a staple if you love eyeshadow or want an everyday palette that is so user-friendly.
Haircare brand to buy from: Bumble and Bumble. Hands down. It doesn't have a lot of competition because once I find haircare bits I love, they don't tend to change too much. I have to give a shout-out to their Invisible Oil shampoo. I've been through two bottles of it and love the stuff. Their primer's pretty awesome as well.
*What would be your go-to beauty brands?
Stationery has and always will be one of my one true loves. There's just something about the colours, textures, designs and tangibility of it that's so pleasing. If you're in a similar frame of mind, you're bound to love Kate of gh0stparties' newest venture, the Nouvelle Daily Shop. It is a stationery lover's treasure trove with fresh new stock being added regularly. There's prints, agendas, notepads, cute cards and more. Today I thought I'd share what I bought from her first drop of stock..
Red Pattern Washi Tape-If you've seen this photo you will know I have a bit of a washi tape obsession. I couldn't resist this one though with its white spots, mainly because it reminds me of a Summer dress I used to have ages ago. Aside from being useful for adorning wrapped gifts and taping pictures to walls, washi tape makes a nice little prop to use in flat lays. I've seen people creating some pretty wicked DIY's with it over on Pinterest too actually. It's extremely useful stuff.
Desktop To-Do List x Rifle Paper Co, also available here-The main idea of the Nouvelle Daily shop is that the stock will constantly be fresh so once most things have sold out, they'll be gone. I'm not too sure if Kate's going to get these back in but you can find Rifle Paper Co at a bunch of places. I've wanted this notepad for ages so I was really pleased to see it in her store. It's just such a gorgeous birds-eye view style illustration and I love it.
This and That Marble Notebook x The Paper Bunny-Marbled things haven't really taken off in NZ yet so when I saw this patterned notebook, and c'mon, you can never have too many notebooks, I had to get it. It's one of my favourite things I purchased from her store and I'm obsessed with it. Case in point: if I like something a lot you'll see it in my photos and this has made many an appearance over the last few weeks. Now these notebooks are sold out at the moment but they are going to be restocked so keep an eye out for 'em, and the marbled phone cases.
-Have you bought anything from the Nouvelle Daily shop? What takes your fancy?
*As always, have the raddest of weekends everyone! Mine's gonna be low key, although I found out the Maccas near where I work has started doing that fancy burger thing+fries (y'know the Instagram vibes) and I want to go there for lunch one day. Gosh I'm classy. Haha. Sunday is Father's Day here in NZ and I'm going for lunch with one of my friends, to a place which is hopefully not overrun with kids and Dads. Have a good one, and I'll see you all on Monday with a lil' beauty post x.
Another month and another book haul. I need to stop buying books! Although to be fair, a lot of these were sent to me by publishers. My to-read pile is getting out of control though so I think, with the exception of one or two YA books out next month, I'm gonna ease off on the book buying for a while. Anyway, below is my haul of books from late July and most of August. I received a couple of books after this video was filmed but I will include them in my September haul. Enjoy! & be sure to let me know your recommendations in the comments section on this post or under the video.
September symbolises the changing of the seasons and also one of the most important months on the fashion magazine calendar. September issues are hotly anticipated, not only for their cover stars and number of pages. It's seen as a time for reinvention, inspiration and a clean slate. Hence it is dubbed 'the January' in fashion. American Vogue is notorious for their extremely hefty September issues, this year's has 800 plus pages alone. Today though I wanted to focus on September issues that I've picked up, both within fashion and outside of it. One of the first blogs I read, Girlwithasatchel used to do this most months with magazines so I thought I'd put my spin on it..
British Vogue, September issue-All hail British Vogue for regularly putting kickass women on their covers. Seriously, I can't think of a muse of mine that's not been on their covers and as a result on my bookshelf. Covers and Emma Watson appreciating aside, British Vogue is still my favourite of all the Vogues. There's always the perfect balance of inspiring editorials and insightful stories. Their beauty pages are pretty top notch too if that's your kind of thing.
Frankie Magazine, issue 67-Frankie have seriously been on top of their cover game this year and this one is hands down my favourite. This issue also has a couple of bonuses in there, one of two collectible art prints (mine is on my pinboard ) and also their first inclusion of fiction stories. There's also a flower village aka heaven, a lady who makes books by hand, flatmates and whether their situation is really like Jess Day's and more.
Fashion Quarterly, Spring 2015-How dreamy is this cover? Antonia Prebble+floral walls=perfection. Fashion Quarterly mightn't be as accessible overseas but if you're ever passing through NZ and want a glimpse into our fashion culture and trends, I highly recommend you grab a copy. As the cover boldly states, this month's issue is about all things film. There's interviews with costume designers from some of our most iconic moments on screen, a really rad Royal Tenenbaums inspired editorial, a brilliant glossary for all the key beauty terms of the moment (strobing anyone?) and a whole heap of fashiony goodness.
Teen Vogue, September 2015-My copy of Teen Vogue's September issue arrived on Monday so I've not really had a proper chance to look through it yet. How good is that cover though? Ansel Elgort *swoon*. There's an amazing beauty editorial inside with Lisa Eldridge, Suki and Imogen Waterhouse, a look at the transgender community and of course a plethora of Fall fashion trends to incorporate. The September issue's of Teen Vogue are usually good but I feel like their October issues, the Young Hollywood ones tend to stand out that little bit more.
Collective magazine, issue 24-So this is technically not a September issue but it's available in New Zealand for most of the month so I'm including it here. There's something about Collective that just makes you want to go out and do amazing things. It helps that there's a tonne of inspiring interviews and stories throughout, but those words of wisdom on paper really up the motivational ante. If you're a bit of a design buff, the whole magazine is designed really well and there's plenty of striking visuals throughout. Now this one is a bit of a mission to find here in NZ but if you can get yourself a copy, buy it.
*What magazines have you read and enjoyed recently?