Sunday, 26 April 2015

Revision tips

Seeing as it is coming up to exam season I thought it would be fitting to post a blog with some revision tips which have helped me get through school and university. It is important to note before you read this that everyone learns in a different way so what has worked for me may not be the best way for everyone else.

1. Make sure you get organised before you start revising!

As scary as it may be to remind yourself just how close exams are, if you go into revision blindly without a plan you are running into the risk of running out of time to cover all of the material before exams start. I find the best way to do this is to use a calendar or use Microsoft Word to print out a calendar which has a small section for each day. Then work out how many chapters of material you need to cover and divide these up into the amount of time left until exams. Also if you are studying for more than one exam then you may find it helpful to tackle a chapter from each subject every day rather than spend each day on just one subject as it will tend to break up the day a bit better and keep your mind more focused.

Then on a daily basis I find the best way to tackle each day is to write a to do list each morning based on what chapters you will be covering that day but in more detail e.g. create a mind-map of chapter 6, answer the questions at the back of chapter 7, etc. By doing this not only will you have a good record of what you have done each day but you will also get some satisfaction from seeing your to do list completed by the end of the day which will help you see just how productive you've been.

2. Take regular breaks

This one is quite important as research has proven that our minds will only remain focused for a short period of time. Back at uni my lectures used to be in 50 minute blocks with a 10 minute break in-between each one so that you had time to refresh your mind and this is something that I carried on doing when revising. It doesn't matter what you do in your 10 minute break as long as you move away from your desk and do something that takes your mind off of revision. Whether you go outside, go and make a cup of tea and have a snack, read a chapter of a book or watch a YouTube video, do what makes your brain feel like it is having a break from working hard for 10 minutes. 

As well as taking these 10 minute breaks you should also factor in a few longer breaks throughout the day. It could be anything from exercising to having a catch up with a friend but try and make sure you spend these longer breaks away from your study environment completely if you can. 

Also, make sure you stop revising well before you go to sleep so that you can give your mind a chance to de-stress and relax so that you can get a good nights sleep. Even if you think that your aren't stressed, exams are always going to be stressful so plan an hour or two before bed when you can do whatever relaxes you the best.

3. Make the best environment for you to work in

By the time you've done a few exam seasons you will probably know which environment you work best in but if your new to exams or find that you aren't working as well as you could be then try and answer the following questions. Where do you work best? At home, in the library or even in a park if it is nice and sunny. What time of the day do you work best? Some people are morning people whilst others are evening people. Whatever time you decide that you work at your best, use this time to tackle the chapters that you find the hardest as this will be the most productive use of your time. Do you work better with music or in silence? I find that having classical music on at a background level helps me to keep calm and take in everything that I'm trying to revise.

One of the most important things about your work environment is to make it a distraction free zone. Turn your phone on silent and don't leave it anywhere near your study environment. You can check it in your 10 minute breaks but don't leave it next to you as you will be tempted to check Instagram or twitter if revision isn't going well.

4. Find out methods helps you revise the best

If you are a visual learner then make mind-maps and posters in lots of bright colours and put them up around your study environment. If you're a kinetic learner then recording the key points and then listening to it may help.

The best way to prepare yourself is to go through past papers as this is the best way to get a understanding of what type of questions could be asked and the difficulty of the questions.

If you are trying to learn a list of points, a formulae, an acronym or something similar then I find the best way to do this is to take apart each section and associate a story with it. This will especially help if you are the sort of person who remembers song lyrics really well.

5. Keep everything neat and tidy!

Finally keep both your revision notes and your study area neat. Not only will this prevent you cleaning your desk as a distraction, it will also help you keep organised which should in turn help you to remain more focused. 

I really hope this helps anyone sitting exams and if you are then good luck! 

Just try and remember to not get too worked up about exams to the point where you freeze. At the end of the day even if you fail an exam, if you want something hard enough there is always a way to get there whether that is to resit the exams or to try a different route to end up where you want to be.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Gerard Cosmetics Lip glosses

Back last year I placed an order online with Gerard Cosmetics after seeing so many Youtubers constantly use their products and I completely understand why.

I ordered 5 of their lip glosses in the shades (from left to right) Shimmer of Hope, Nude, Butter Cream, Sugar Mama & Rose Hill. Two of which, Butter Cream and Rose Hill were created as a collaboration with the amazing Jaclyn Hill.

Firstly the quality of these products is amazing. So opaque, so creamy and so long lasting. Even when my lips look dry and hideous these lip glosses manage to make them look normal. They last all day and they smell lovely. Since I purchased these I have worn them pretty much every single day that I wear makeup which just shows how much I've loved them.

Secondly, the packaging is perfect. They look gorgeous and I love that you can see the colours through the packaging. Also they come with a mirror and a light which means you can apply your lipgloss anytime and anywhere.

Finally, the price and the service was amazing. I live in the UK and ordered these from the Gerard cosmetics website based in the US. Fantastic quality for money and they arrived so quickly without any trouble. Plus they have coupon codes every so often which mean free delivery even internationally. Sign up to their website newsletter so that you are always aware of the latest deal if you are planning to try some of them. There are some amazing deals going on at the moment.

My favourites have been Butter Cream & Shimmer of Hope. I'm itching to try their lipsticks next!

Monday, 6 April 2015

Lush Haul

Seeing as it is the Easter weekend I thought I would post a Easter themed Lush haul of products I picked up a few weeks ago.

The top two on the left are the Immaculate Eggception eggs, £6.95. So far I've tried to yellow one, and I love the idea but I'm just not sure if these are worth the money in comparison to some of the other ones. The idea is similar to the locket heart Valentine's day bath bomb. Make sure you break the egg into two before you pop one of these in the bath so you can see the little egg inside, it does make it more special to do this otherwise you don't really get to see the egg inside. I would say this is a great, fun bath bomb to try but I would stick to buying one colour instead of trying both.

Next to the is the Rose bubble bar, £2.95, which not only smells amazing but it also leaves your skin feeling great. The ingredients consist of Turkish rose & cocoa butter which explains the smell and the softness of your skin. It's almost like a bubble bar mixed with a bath melt. Also, it turns the bath a lovely pale pink colour. This is definitely one of my favourites, I hope this one isn't limited edition!

Next to this is the Bunch of Carrots bubble bars, £5.95, which are reusable. I haven't used these yet, however they have a very citrus, fresh smell so I cannot wait to try these.

At the bottom left we have this little guy which is the Bubblegrub bubble bar. Sadly this was released for the Mother's Day range and has now been taken off of the website. This has the most amazing smell, hard to describe, but it definitely has a hint of vanilla to it. The design is so cute aswell! I'm just so sad that this isn't available anymore, good job I stocked up on this one...

Next to this is the Golden Egg bath melt, £3.75, which is easily my favourite of the Easter range. I spoke about this in my previous blog so go and check that out for a review on this one!

Next to this is the Ultraviolet bubble bar, which was another one of the Mother's Day ranges. Again, this is no longer available on the website and I haven't managed to try this one yet.

Finally we have the Fluffy Egg bath bomb which is the pink egg on the right, £2.95. This one is another one of my favourites. If you like the Snow Fairy shower gel or Candy mountain at Christmas then you will love this one, it has the same candy-like smell. It turns the bath a gorgeous pink colour! The smell and the pinkness along with the really reasonable price makes this an amazing bath bomb!

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Things I have been loving this month

I thought I would get back into the swing of blogging with a quick monthly favourites!
The first thing that I have absolutely loved this month is that I have finally been able to get some use out of these gorgeous sunglasses that I got for my Christmas. They aren't my usual style but they look so lovely on! The fact that I now wake up to sunshine instead of total darkness makes me so happy, it's quite amazing how a little thing like this gives you a great start to the day.

A while ago I ordered some makeup online from John Lewis and with my parcel came a sample of the new My Burberry perfume, which smells amazing. It is a scent that I can imagine being perfect to wear for work. Anyway, I have a Elle magazine subscription as I find it so much easier for it to be delivered rather than having to buy it and then carry it home on the tube, plus you save quite a lot of money this way. When I finally got around to reading this month's copy I found inside an envelope advertising the new Burberry perfume. The cutest part about this is that for Elle subscribers they monogrammed your initials on the envelope. So not only is the smell gorgeous but they also have advertised it in such a fun, personal way. I've just run out of my favourite perfume which is the Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb and now I'm really struggling over whether to repurchase Flowerbomb or buy the My Burberry perfume! Decisions, decisions. 

The next thing I have been obsessed with this month is the Urban Decay Lipstick in Naked. This is the perfect deeper pink nude. I've been wearing it almost every day since I discovered it. For Christmas I got the one of the Sephora Favourites gift sets which contained loads of mini-sized lip products, which I think is the perfect way to try out a lot of new products at once without having to buy the full sized versions. So I think the fact that this is a mini-sized lipstick has made me fall in love with it even more, I just can't believe it has taken me 3 months to realise what a perfect colour this is. 

Now that signs of Spring arriving is underway I'm loving highlighters even more than usual. I just think a glistening highlight looks stunning on everyone. The one I am currently obsessed with is the Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector Pressed in Opal. This one will also be perfect for the summer as it is more of a gold, bronzed highlighter. Now that I've tried this I can't wait to get my hands on this in Moonstone although the Rose Gold one looks equally beautiful.

Now I know everyone goes on about how much they love Lush in Blogs and on Youtube but honestly I am obsessed. I've only really been crazy about Lush since last year and when I found out about their boxing day half price size I went ever so slightly crazy (about seven ginormous gift boxes too crazy). Anyway, despite having quite a lot of leftover Christmas lush products I had to order some of their Easter range (Lush Easter haul will be coming later this week!). My favourite product by far is the golden egg. This is one of their bath melts and it leaves you with the most silky soft skin afterwards. I know the amount of glitter will put some people off but the glitter does give you skin a really gorgeous look that would be perfect for a summer party and it is definitely not too in your face glittery. Plus the smell is so unique, it literally smells like chocolate. Aside from the smell, the way it leaves you skin is similar to the Snow Angel bath melt, so you like that then you have to try this! I've already stocked up on these but I'm already itching to buy a few more, someone take my card off of me now!

I always get Gelish on my nails every 3 - 4 weeks and this month my lovely friend Kate who does my nails chose this colour combination for me which I absolutely love. The photo isn't picking up the subtle sparkle that the hot pink has in it. I just think it is so lovely and different, plus it matches the flowers in my room. I'm thinking that this would be perfect for a summer holiday.

Last but not least I have to mention two songs which I have been playing on repeat constantly since I heard them this month, which are Earned It by The Weeknd which features on the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack and Lay Me Down by Sam Smith. They are quite different from each other but I love them both so check them out if you haven't already heard them!

Have a lovely weekend x

Prada Sunglasses: I couldn't find the exact style online but these are very similar -
My Burberry perfume:
Urban Decay lipstick in Naked:
Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector in Opal:
Lush Golden Egg:

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Makeup Shopping in America!

It took me ages to decide what to write as my first blog post as I have a million and one ideas floating around my head. For months now I have been obsessed with all the Youtube beauty channels and it has made me even more in love with makeup and fashion. Recently I visited America and walking around Sephora and Mac I became so inspired that I decided to start a beauty blog and hence the idea for my first post, anyway enough rambling!

The first thing I purchased from Sephora was the Sephora favourites Summerstash. I had been eyeing this up on their website for a while and thought it was the perfect thing to get to introduce me to some new products.

The first product I tried from this set is the Urban Decay all nighter makeup setting spray and it is absolutely amazing! I can't believe I survived without this product before. It just keeps your makeup looking so fresh and amazing. The other day I applied my makeup at 10am and it still looked so perfect at 11pm that I didn't want to take it off, sad I know. I honestly recommend this product to everyone.

The next product is the Make Up For Ever aqua eyes eyeliner pencil in 12L - blue with green highlights. Even though I had seen loads of Youtubers do the whole blue eyeliner in the waterline trend lately I was a bit sceptical about using this myself. I am so glad this was included in the set because I actually love the pop of colour that it gives, its such a nice summery look with its metallically blue colour. Plus it lasts really well which is a bonus.

I am in love with the cuteness of the mini Nars laguna bronzer included, its the perfect size to pop in your handbag. Typically I'm not a fan of shimmery bronzers but after using this I can understand why it is so popular. It is the perfect bronzer to use in the summer with its subtle shimmery finish. So far I have been using it on days when I want to look glowing and summery but don't want to have to apply a bronzer and a highlighter.

Next is a Buxom divine goddess luminizer which is a golden highlighter. I do like this product however you have to be so careful how much you put on your face otherwise you risk looking like a disco ball and also it really stings when you apply it! I put it on the top of my cheekbones and my cupid's bow and it stung for a good 10 minutes which wasn't pleasant. I'm not sure if I will be using this product again because of this.

Also included is a Stila magnificent metals eye shadow in Kitten which I really wanted to try. It really does live up to the amazing reputation it has been given by beauty experts. I find it gives the eyes a really dazzling, glittery finish, perfect on top of a gold / bronze eye shadow.

An OCC stained gloss in New Wave is included and it is a gorgeous summer shade. As its a stain it is perfect to wear on the beach, round the pool or anywhere hot, plus the colour is such a lovely bright summery pink. Just don't be put off with how neon it looks as it doesn't look neon on the lips.

Next in the set is a mini Josie Maran coconut watercolour cheek gelee in pink escape and I think that this is another summer must have for around the pool. It gives a lovely subtle flush to the cheeks without feeling like you're actually wearing any makeup. The only downside is that this mini version is so small that its hard to get product out of the pot but hey first world problems.

The Marc Jacobs mascara included is a nice mascara for a little to no makeup look. It makes your lashes look almost tinted, which is perfect for those hot summery days. I don't think I would purchase this in the full size however as I prefer my lashes to look very full.

Lastly is a Deborah Lippmann nail polish in Mermaid's Dream and I can't wait to use this. I always get Gellish on my nails but am planning to paint this onto my toes asap. It's not a colour I would normally go for - I always pick pinks - but I think this would be a lovely change.

All these products were in a handy cream and gold makeup bag and I honestly would say this is a great buy for someone who wants to try out some new products which are perfect for the summer.

The next thing I got in Sephora was the Sephora Favorites lash stash to go. I've been stuck in a bit of a mascara rut, using my two favourite L'oreal mascaras for about the last two years so I was eager to try some new ones and though this was the perfect way to try them.

This set was $25 dollars for 5 sample sized mascaras and included a voucher for a full sized mascara of your choice out of the 5 samples. I didn't buy this until my last morning in America so I had to redeem the vochuer without trying the mascaras. I choose the Too Faced better than sex one as my full sized one as I have heard really good things about it.

Included in the set is the: Bare Minerals lash domination volumizing mascara; Blinc mascara; Lancome hypnose drama instant full body volume mascara; Too Faced better than sex mascara and the Tarte lights, camera, lashes 4-in-1 mascara. I've only tried two at the moment so I will do a full review on them once I have got time to try all 5.

The last thing I bought from Sephora was the Too Faced Natural Eyes Palette and I can safely say that I am completely obsessed with this. Its the only thing I have used on my eyes ever since I have bought it and there's not one shade in there which isn't amazing. If you love golden, bronze and neutral colour eyeshadows then you need this palette! I can't wait to add more Too Faced palettes to my collection after buying this one, they're just perfect! The palette consists of 4 mattes and 5 shimmers, with one of the mattes a perfect highlight shade. My favourite colour has to be silk teddy, a gorgeous shimmery pinky champagne colour.

I also decided to go to Mac because the lipsticks in America work out so much cheaper than here in the UK. $15 vs £12 with a 1.65 exchange rate worked around £9 which was a pretty good bargain. I decided to get creme cup, saint germain and girl about town. I do love them all although I have worn creme cup pretty much everyday since I got it. It is definitely my favourite lipstick ever, the colour is the perfect pinky nude, although I would say its more on the pink side. If you haven't got creme cup in your collection then go and check it out now!