Beauty : Technic Brush Cleaner Review*

Cleaning makeup brushes has to be one of, if not the most, boring jobs on this planet. My whole brush cleaning routine has been the same ever since I started wearing makeup and I have always stuck with using baby shampoo not knowing of the other products out there on offer. The more I expand my makeup collection, the more brushes I use which add to the Sunday afternoon cleaning chore. I was sent the Technic brush cleaning product a couple of months ago and have been so surprised with how it has performed. 

My little Technic package included not only the brush cleaner, but also two extremely soft brushes that I had no idea were being sent. If you're not familiar with brush cleaner's, because honestly I had never really used one before now, then you wouldn't be wrong in thinking it looks like a bar of soap. A bar of soap that when wet cleans your brushes faster than ever before, and that's quite the claim! Using the cleaner honestly couldn't be easier. First you wet the brush and then swirl it round in the container making sure the cleaner rubs off. Next you swirl the brush again in your hand to lather the brush before finally rinsing under the sink and setting aside to dry - it couldn't be simpler! I've been testing this out in my weekly brush wash and have found it to be a much better and faster way to clean my brushes, including my foundation brush which is always full of more product than the smaller eyeshadow ones. I also love how soft it left my brushes after use. I have certainly noticed a difference after using it. 

Also included in the package were the softest brushes I think I have ever owned! I am a big fan of my Real Technique brushes, but you can't go wrong with an extra eyeshadow brush or two, three okay maybe ten! The larger brush is perfect for applying powder under the eyes, as well as tapping on a  little bit of blush or highlight. 

Overall, I am really impressed with the quality and finish of both the brush cleaners and the brushes. I am so glad I have finally found a product to make my least favourite bit of makeup application quick! Technic are also a favourite brand of mine when it comes to affordable but great makeup, so I love how the other products within their brand work just as well. 

Have you tried any Technic products? Let me know what you think of them! 

Until next time,
 *All products mentioned in this blogpost were sent to me to try. As always all opinions, images and words are my own and are 100% honest. 

Beauty : Glossybox September 2017

It's probably a sad thing to admit, but coming home and finding my little Glossybox sat on the doorstep gives me a lot of joy! This month's box was themed around the topic of 'Change' and the fresh start that September brings. This month's box also marked my one year anniversary of being a subscriber so I was surprised to see a little pink notebook in honour of the occasion - Thanks Glossybox! 

This month's box was back to the classic pink, which I'm sure you know I personally love! Lets take a look inside...

Siligel Blender | RRP £5.99 | Full sized product
I was so excited to see the Siligel Blender in this month's box! Since spotting all the beauty gurus choosing these over a sponge, I have been keen to try it out for myself to see what I think. The whole concept seems odd, and not going to lie I felt a little silly using it, but it did the trick! The idea behind the silicone applicator is that it allows you to use all of the product, meaning you don't get through as much foundation. It's also more hygienic as you can quickly wash the blender after each use. I have already given this and try and found it a little tricky to use. Sponges and me just don't seem to get along and I would much rather pick up my Real Techniques brushes to apply foundation. I tried to follow the instructions of rolling and patting the blender but gave up! I am going to give it another try, so stay tuned to see if it's featured in a favourites post! 

Pixi By Petra Brow Tamer | RRP £12 | Full sized product
I was so excited to see the inclusion of a Pixi product in this month's box! I have always looked at Pixi products but never actually purchased anything. I love that my first product from the brand is one that I would have genuinely bought myself! This product is a clear brow gel that you use after filling in the brows to make sure they stay set in place for the whole day. I am running out of my favourite Browcote brow gel, so am excited to use this. 

Monu Skincare Firming Fiji Facial Oil | RRP £26 
'Facial Oils are the skin's best friend' claims the description of this product. I'm not sure if I would 100% agree with that statement, but it's an interesting thought when trying out the product. The directions say to apply this product in the morning and at night for a daily use on dry skin, or to use it in place of your moisturisers for an intense treatment. I am always a little bit weary of trying out new skincare, especially if I have finally managed to get into a little routine so it may be a little time before I give this a proper try! On the plus side it smells good! 

Taylor's 32 Flavoured Natural Whitening Toothpaste| RRP £5 | Full sized product
It seems like everyone and their mum's are having a moment with whitening toothpaste again! Taylor's 32 is an all natural minty toothpaste formulated with sodium bicarbonate to help remove stains naturally as well as reducing the build up of plaque. I was given the flavour Grapefruit and Mint which sounds very interesting as it's not a combination I would have thought tastes nice together. 

Skin fix Hand Repair Cream | RRP £12.99 | Full sized product
The final product in this month's box was this Hand Repair Cream, a product that is well needed especially with the beginning of Winter coming on us! In my eyes you can never go wrong with a Hand Cream so I know this handy little tube will be put straight into my handbag! 

Another little extra treat in this month's box was a Kinder Bueno chocolate bar, which I can neither confirm or deny was eaten minutes after I had photographed all of the images for this post...

Overall I was pleased once again with everything that was included in this month's box. The boxes continue to get better and I love how they are curated perfectly to the theme each time! 

Until next time, 

Lifestyle : A trip to Buckingham Palace | OOTD

London is probably one of my favourite cities to visit, although I'm  probably being extremely biased only living a stones throw away from it! As much as I love London, it's very rare that I actually do any of the 'tourist' attractions that it has to offer. Unless you count Oxford Street shopping as an attraction - that's one thing I definitely have done enough of in my time! 

Last year my mum and I visited Buckingham Palace as part of a girlie weekend. When leaving you have the option to have your ticket stamped to allow free entry within a year. We vowed to return together and finally booked to go last Saturday. (A little fact about me is that I actually met the Queen as a child, although that's probably a story for another day!). Every year, the Palace puts on a different exhibition and I find it so interesting walking in the footsteps of the royal family! As part of our day trip, we took a walk first through Green Park in the sunshine before heading off to the Palace. Saturday felt like the first day of Autumn weather, and I love wearing boots and jackets, so I thought what a great time and place for a mini OOTD fashion shoot!

I knew that I wanted to dress for the weather, whilst still looking a little bit fashionable... I mean I did try to look nice for Queenie you never know if she will pop in! I have been waiting for the right occasion to bust out my new Zara Jacket and am so pleased I wore it. I purchased this in Cyprus when on holiday so am not sure if this is available in the UK! I paired the jacket with my trusty Topshop Jamie jeans and a slouchy grey V-neck t shirt from Next. This shirt is honestly one of the most comfy things I own, so is always a favourite choice of mine! To finish off the look I wore my Topshop studded chelsea boots and Dune London hand bag.

At the palace my mum and I decided to treat ourselves to something a little sweet. Last year we did the exact same thing so thought it would be nice to carry on the little mummy/daughter tradition. We shared some profiteroles and vanilla cake. Plus, it's been nice to say I have officially had tea in the Queen's garden!  

Have you been to Buckingham Palace? What did you think of the grounds if you have? Let me know! 

Until next time, 

Lifestyle : Blogger photography 101

One of the things that first attracted me to start a blog was my passion for photography. I love being able to capture moments in time and then sharing them in a place that I can look back on in years to come. It's crazy to think that I have now been blogging for over four years. That's a very long time for something I initially thought was going to just be a 'Summer holiday diary'. Over this time I have learnt some tips and tricks that have helped me take some gorgeous photographs, if I do say so myself. Inspired by the last GRLPOWR chat I hosted, and looking back through all of the dreadful first blog photos, it's fair to say that I have improved over the years. Now I don't think I am a pro in anyway, shape or form, but I wanted to share them incase they could help you out too. 

Find the equipment that works for you
It's taken me a lot of time, and I mean a lot of time, to actually build up my photography equipment with the products that work the best for me. Since September 2015, I have been using the Olympus Pen EP-L7 'Blogger' camera and it has honestly changed my life. Previously I was using a Nikon DSLR that I found quite difficult to get to grips with, so investing in the Pen was a welcomed change. Along with the camera, I have also found the perfect lenses for my kit. Three of my favourites being the 45mm fixed lens, the 40-150mm lens and the standard 14-42mm that comes with the camera when purchased. All of these lenses are used regularly when I am taking photographs for my blog, and are well loved. In addition to the lenses I am also lucky enough to own my own lighting system that I use when shooting product images for my posts. The lights have seriously changed the way my photographs look when edited and posted. 

Image taken using the 45mm fixed lens

Image taken using the 45mm fixed lens

Image taken using the 14-45mm lens

Image taken using the 14-45mm lens

Image taken using the 40-150mm lens

Make use of the natural lighting
This tip seems a little bit hypocritical with what I was just saying about using studio lights, but it's true and worth mentioning. As much as I love the studio lighting and the results they give, nothing beats using natural lighting. With summer coming to an end and the light in the day becoming shorter, natural lighting is something that you will have to make use of as and when you can.

Take lots of photographs!
Now I know that this tip might sound a given, but it is one that has taken me a while to get to grips with. Quite often I will like what I see through the camera screen and move onto the next thing without second guessing. It's only when I transfer the images to my laptop that the quality/lighting/focus isn't as good as I would have liked it and I have to get everything out to start again. Taking lots of photographs of one 'position' is a good way to make sure things turn out better in post editing. On another note, I am one of those people who like to use images taken on my camera on my Instagram page. To mix it up a little I will specifically take photographs of products that I am writing about on my blog in a different position that will work better with Instagram to help promote my posts, although that is a completely other blogpost in itself!

Another tip that kind of goes along with 'taking lots' of photographs, is bulk taking images for future posts especially if I know that I have a lot going on or if the weather is going to be awful. Doing this allows you the flexibility of being able to schedule posts as well as making use of the time you have to get more done. Personally I always feel productive if I can shoot a couple of posts in the same day.

Don't be too hard on yourself!
So this is something that I try to tell myself in everyday situations, but it is completely applicable to photography too! Sometimes things just don't work out, and that's ok! There have been so many times I plan out images in my head that just don't translate as well when it comes to actually taking the photographs. But that's ok, as humans we have to learn to be able to grow. 

Overall, photography is completely about you. There is no right or wrong way, which is the beauty of it. I hope this post has helped you in some way. If there are any questions you might have about any of the equipment that I use then please let me know, I would love to help! 

Until next time,