Monday, October 05, 2015


Eye Makeup Bundle Giveaway

It's time for another giveaway! One reader of my blog, who enters following the Rafflecopter instructions below, will win this bundle of eye makeup products. There's a full-size Bare Minerals Lash Domination mascara, a full-size Benefit Cosmetics Brow Zings palette, a set of Urban Decay Partial False Lashes, a travel-size Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion and a deluxe miniature Benefit Cosmetics They're Real mascara- a total retail price of £72.50.

Entry is via the Rafflecopter widget below, and the worldwide giveaway will close at 11.59PM on Friday 30th October...

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Monday, October 05, 2015


Citizen M Glasgow Exterior

Last week I went on a miniature press trip in my own city of Glasgow and it was tremendous fun. It was hosted by Citizen M and involved a sushi-filled drinks reception, followed by a trip to the launch party for the Turner Prize 2015 at the Tramway and ending with a delicious dinner at Stravagin in the city's West End.

Citizen M Glasgow Interiors

Citizen M Glasgow Lights

Citizen M Glasgow Lobby

Citizen M had kept the itinerary for the day pretty much under wraps. We knew we had to check in at 2PM, that there would be drinks at 5PM followed by a preview of the Turner Prize and dinner. None of us knew that we were actually leaving the hotel until they announced that the taxis were waiting outside. This made for such a fun night full of surprises. It was definitely one of the best blogger events and group press trips that I've ever attended. The hotel itself is so stylish, quirky and packed with colour. My room even had mood lighting and sound effects that were controlled via an iPad.

Citizen M Glasgow Turner Prize Blogger Event

Laura Pearson-Smith at Turner Prize 2015

Luckily I knew a lot of the other blogger lovelies there, so I enjoyed a great catch up. Naomi Baxter from Fabugloss is a professional makeup artist and she did my makeup for me. I am really pleased with how it turned out. We went for a grey-toned smokey eye with false lashes and a nude lip. I got so caught up in chatting with everyone that I didn't notice that the 200 photos I was taking on my DSLR weren't saving anywhere as there wasn't an SD card in there! All of the beautiful photographs in this post (except the one of myself) were taken by the official event photographer Joni Israeli.

Turner Prize 2015

Nicole Wermer's Turner Prize 2015 Entry

After having my makeup done and checking out my room, we all met in the Canteen M bar area for drinks and lots of sushi. Two hours passed so quickly, and it was time to head to the Tramway arts space in the Southside area of Glasgow, just outside the city. This is where the Turner Prize 2015 exhibition is being held until 17th January 2016. Now I must admit, I'm not that keen on art- especially not the abstract displays usually produced by Turner Prize entrants; but I was keen to see if actually being there with the pieces would change my mind. Sadly it didn't. I just didn't get 80% of it. This year's nominees are Assemble, Bonnie Camplin, Janice Kerbel and Nicole Wermers. The oddest of the bunch was definitely the room filled with chairs that had fur coats on the back of them by Nicole Wermers. It just looked like chairs with coats hanging on them, randomly scattered about a room. Her work is supposed to reflect how we take ownership of something temporarily in society by hanging our coats on the back of it. I'm afraid I don't think this is art. 

Janice Kerbel's Turner Prize 2015 Entry

The nominee that interested me the most, and whose idea I think is the cleverest, is definitely Janice Kerbel. She created poetry and scores of operatic music to audibly reflect the pain and disasters that happen to a man called Doug. She tried to make the audience feel these traumatic incidents in his life through sound. Being an ex-actress and theatre professional, this really appealed to me. The problem I had with it though is whether it is art or performance i.e. does it belong in a gallery or on a stage? Where do you draw the line of what is actually art and what isn't? Oh the questions! I suppose, first and foremost, the aim of all four of the artists was to make me feel something. Janice Kerbel is the only one who did.

Stravaigin Glasgow

After viewing the four entrant's work, we proceeded into the party. There were lots of canapes made with local Scottish produce on offer, so we spent some time here trying everything before heading to dinner at Stravaigin. Our dinner was a wonderful three-course menu; again full of lots of local Scottish produce. I had pigeon breast as a starter, followed by Aberdeen Angus steak with mash and truffle butter as a main course and finishing with a Dulce du Leche parfait with raspberries and a chocolate brownie for dessert.

At midnight we called it a night and headed back to our comfortable king size beds at Citizen M. I slept soundly in a food and alcohol induced coma after a truly wonderful evening.

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Saturday, October 03, 2015


September 2015 Fashion & Lifestyle Favourites

The other day I shared my September 2015 monthly beauty favourites with you and now it's time for my monthly fashion and lifestyle favourites. It's all lifestyle this month as I've been greatly fuelling my food, stationery and homeware obsessions lately.

I visit Lidl weekly to check on their stationery stock as they sometimes have some amazing items from the likes of Sweden and Germany. I found this thick quality notebook with a camera on the front for just £2.99 a few weeks ago. It's got lovely cream paper inside that are edged with blue too.

Nairns Snackers

I am definitely a snacker and my savoury snack of choice is usually cheese Wotsits, but I've been loving the new cheese-flavoured Nairns Snackers instead this month. They are basically very thin and flavoursome mini oatcakes, and are only 100 calories per bag. They are made from wholegrain oats and you can get them in all major supermarkets for £2.49 for a 5-pack multipack.

Camilla Morton Make Life Beautiful

I adored Camilla Morton's How To Walk In High Heels book when I was younger. It was like a bible to me. So when she released her new book Make Life Beautiful (£15 from, I had to have it. It's full of tips and tutorials from top designers such as Lulu Guinness on how to sew, make and bake things that will make your life prettier. The photography inside is just beautiful and I'm in love.

Olixar Pocketsize Selfie Stick

Yes, I have finally jumped on the selfie stick bandwagon. They are actually very useful little tools for group photos and selfies where you want people to see where you are behind you. This Olixar pocket-size one (£14.99 from has a handy mirror so that you can use your phone's higher quality rear camera and still check you are posing attractively. Genius!

Underwater Tea Lights

Finally, we all know how much I enjoy my relaxing baths. Even more so since I discovered these waterproof submersible electronic tea lights. These ones are £7.99 from and I love having a bath in a dimly lit room with these under the water- it's so relaxing!

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Friday, October 02, 2015


Heritage fabrics and fabrics with rich textures are everywhere this AW15. It’s great to have a strong collection of timeless leather bags, but if you’ve been thinking about adding some different textures into your accessories stash, now is the time to do it. 

Image Credit: Missguided /
The fashion trend for faux fur is back again this year like it is every Autumn/Winter. It’s not just in clothing however- there are some great faux fur statement clutch bags out there too. Adding one of these to your look is such an easy way to make a plain outfit more interesting and on-trend. I love this bold striped one from Missguided.

Image Credit: J Mendel / Pinterest
If you need more space though, there are some great larger leather tote bags with faux fur accents too. I don’t mind investing in bags like these as I know I’ll be able to get good use out of them next year too. River Island have some fabulous looking ones, and I adore this super-chic one from J Mendel- I just wish the Midi Bugatti bag ($2,400) was made of faux fur as the style is beautiful but I'm against the use of real fur. Anyone fancy producing a dupe?
Image Credit: Jil Sander / Pinterest

Image Credit: ASOS /
I’ve also had my eye on some of the faux animal skin textured bags out at the moment. In a recent Primark haul (which I posted about here) I got a cute faux crocodile skin pouch to keep my phone in. I'm really loving this look in handbags too, so I might have to snap one up (do you see what I did there...SNAP...). I am particularly eyeing up this snakeskin Jil Sander tote bag, as the print on it is beautiful; but it's out of my budget I'm afraid. At the other end of the financial scale, this simple cream faux crocodile tote from ASOS looks great too.

Do you have any stand-out bags that you are coveting at the moment?

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Friday, October 02, 2015


September 2015 Beauty Favourites

Happy October! As usual, I want to share with you my favourite beauty products from last month. There is a real mix again, so hopefully you'll discover something new that you would like to try...

Kneipp Eucalyptus Sparkling Bath Tablet

Kneipp Eucalyptus Sparkling Bath Tablet, £1.95,
This is such a perfect Winter flu season product. In each pack, you get one bath tablet that is full of essential oils that are released into your bath water when you drop it in. The Eucalyptus variety is great for clearing your sinuses if you have a cold and it has greatly soothed my tired muscles during a month full of workouts.

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Nail Laquer in Alexa Swatches

Joan Collins Timeless Beauty Nail Laquer in Alexa, £13,
Alexa is a perfect match for Pantone's colour of the year Marsala, so you'll be bang on trend with this. It is very long-lasting and chip resistant and I can't see myself opting for any other nail polish for the rest of the year.

Origins Salt Suds Foaming Body Wash

Origins Salt Suds Foaming Body Wash, £19, Coming Soon (
This has been my go-to morning shower gel all month. It looks so sleek with its new geometric print packaging design and has a lovely awakening spearmint scent. It's enriched with Dead Sea Salt too, which is very hydrating and deep cleaning.

Sure Compressed Shower Fresh Anti-Perspirant Deodorant

Sure Compressed Shower Fresh Anti-Perspirant Deodorant, £3,
Before this, I hadn't used a spray deodorant for years as I preferred sticks and roll-ons. However, this smells amazing and I've been addicted to it all September. It leaves me feeling clean and fresh all day, no matter what I'm doing. It comes in a handy compressed can that lasts just as long as the larger version does. Sure also say it contains their specially-developed MotionSense technology, which they describe as small capsules which respond directly to movement to further protect you from sweat. I'm not sure about these gimicky claims, but I can say that it definitely gives me very long-lasting results.

Bare Minerals Quick Change Brush Cleaner

Bare Minerals Quick Change Brush Cleaner, £10,
I like to regularly wash my brushes properly with liquid soap or shampoo; but this handy spray cleanser is perfect to clean your brushes for quick changes of colour during your makeup application process. It has meant that I can use my favourite brush with several different shades in the one sitting. I really like the new sleek black packaging and the spray is really fast-drying too; which avoids any waiting around before moving on with a different colour. I've also been loving their new Supreme Finisher Brush (£24) for face powder application- it's so fluffy and provides a natural sheer dusting of product. 

Are you keen to try any of these?

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015


Fairy House In Garden

When Ocean Finance got in touch to ask if I wanted to build a house for fairies (to highlight the fact that some of their customers use their financial lending services to enable them to build their own dream homes*), the childish part of me jumped at the chance. I actually got ridiculously excited as I most definitely wanted to create a dream home for all the tiny fairies in my garden to live in. Who doesn't love fairies?!

How To Build a Fairy House

Seriously though, this would be a great activity to do with children. I got a ceramic plant pot for the house itself from my local garden centre. I've given it a pink painted rim as I'm told that fairies adore pink. Luckily enough, fairies are the same size as dollshouse dolls, so getting some furniture and accessories for them to use isn't difficult. I got all the items for my fairy house on eBay in the dollshouse category- including the door, doormat, keys, picture frames, tea set, cutlery, tiny bird and cakes.

Dollshouse Picnic

Dollshouse Teaset

I thought it would be nice to set out a picnic for the fairies, so I cut a small square piece of fabric for the picnic blanket and added some little plastic flower cabochons (also from eBay) to decorate the surrounding grass. Finally, I sprinkled some fairy dust (gold glitter) over the stone path I created and on top of their house to welcome them on their arrival.

I can't wait to go to bed tonight so I can check if they've eaten the cakes in the morning! Do fairies leave footprints?

*This is a collaborative post with Ocean Finance. I have never used Ocean Finance as a customer, so I can't endorse their financial services. Always seek advice from an independent financial advisor before applying for and accepting loans, credit cards or mortgages from any company.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015


Book Jackets

I have another batch of books that I've finished reading, so I wanted to share my opinions on them with you. It's a mixed bag of thrillers and chick-lit, with some that are defintely worth picking up yourself and some that are definitely worth avoiding.

The State We're In by Adele Parks
This is a really boring novel. It also has the most terrible ending- like the author just couldn't be bothered to write anymore so just plucked the strangest of happenings out of thin air. It's a human interest story about how decisions in love can affect the rest of your life and it follows the lives of several people who are all more connected than they, at first, realise. None of the characters are likeable and you don't really take anything away from having read this book.

The Memory Game by Nicci French
I didn't think I would enjoy this book as it isn't aimed at my age group; but I did. The narrator and protagonist is an elegant woman in her late 50s, Jane Martello, who is going through a divorce. The story is about the disappearance, decades ago, of her best friend Natalie and how it has affected her and her family's lives ever since. During a house renovation, Natalie's body is discovered buried in the back garden and Jane sets out to try and work out what happened to her by remembering more about the events of all those years ago. The story isn't so much a thriller, but more of an exploration of the human mind and of how experiences during childhood shape us. The premise of how Jane uncovers lost memories isn't very believable, but this didn't stop me from enjoying what is a very telling book about the human condition.

How To Get a (Love) Life by Rosie Blake
I do like a classic chick-lit novel for easy, enjoyable reading. This isn't a deep or intelligent book with a riveting story, it's just good entertainment. In it we follow Nicola, a permanent singleton, who is set a challenge by her work colleague to find a date by Valentine's Day. It takes us through her disastrous dating experiences until she finally gets the man of her dreams; who, as it happens, didn't actually need to be found.

The Year of Taking Chances by Lucy Diamond
This is a quiet unassuming book with a great story about human life. Nothing big or exciting happens; it's simply a well-written tale about the nuances of human life and how we deal with adversity. It's set in a small rural village and tells the stories of three 40-something women who meet at a time when they all need one another's friendship. I found it a very uplifting read.

The Woman Who Stole My Life by Marian Keyes
I loved this book! Marian Keyes' writing is incredibly funny and I laughed out loud on many occasions. It's narrated by Stella Sweeney, an Irish woman in her early 40s who got a rare disease that caused her to be unable to move any muscle in her body. She was mentally fully awake, but could do nothing but blink. The story shifts back and forward in time from when she was hospitalised, to soon after her recovery, then several years later too. It's packed full of Irish humour, but is also very thought-provoking. You really connect with and root for Stella; empathising with the various problems in her life. I would love there to be a sequel to this as Stella is such a brilliant three-dimensional character.

Human Remains by Elizabeth Haynes 
What can I say about this? It is literally the most disturbing and disgusting story that I have ever read. It's also incredibly unbelievable and far-fetched. I loved Elizabeth Haynes' Into The Darkest Corner novel; but you just can't connect with or understand her characters in this one at all. They are very one-dimensional. I can't really go into too much of the story without giving it away; but it involves a lot of rotting corpse descriptions and an investigation into why there are rotting corpses in the first place. It's supposed to be a thriller, but it doesn't thrill- it's just an unnecessary, gratuitous depiction of what happens to our bodies after we die. It has actually made me worry about the writer's sanity- who could think up a story like this?

If you have any novel recommendations yourself, leave them for me in the comments!

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Monday, September 28, 2015


End of Season Fashion Sale Picks

Lots of stores have great sales on at the moment to mark the end of Summer. It's not all bikinis and flip-flops however- if you look carefully there are some great pieces that will work perfectly with the Autumn and Winter trends. I've rounded up my favourites for you; but hurry, as they'll go quickly!

Tall Black Suedette Fringed Waistcoat, Was £17.99 Now £9.00, |  Rust Belted Wrap Sleeveless Blazer, Was £22.99 Now £14.00, | Twist Back Shirt, Was £40 Now £15, | Check Co-Ord Skirk, Was £38 Now £15, | Yumi 70s Tile Jumper, Was £50 Now £35, | Petite Print Red Shell Top, Was £28 Now £14, | Large Check Sleeveless Jacket, Was £33 Now £19, | Brown Faux Suede Shift Dress, Was £45 Now £20,

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Monday, September 28, 2015


Lancôme Ombre Hypnôse Stylo

The Ombre Hypnôse Stylo eyeshadow sticks (£18) are a new release from Lancôme. If you are a fan of the By Terry Ombre Blackstar sticks (£29), you'll love these for just over half the price. I've been trying out shade 03 Taupe Quartz and I love it.

Lancôme Ombre Hypnôse Stylo in Taupe Quartz

You can create a gorgeous eye makeup look in seconds with these cream shadow sticks. They look great on their own, blended out across the eyelid, and you can also use them as a liner thanks to their pointy tip which you can maintain with a built in sharpener. Once you have put these on your skin, they literally won't budge until you use a good waterproof eye makeup remover. This makes them incredibly long-wearing (mine stayed put all day), but it also means you have to work quickly in blending them.

Lancôme Ombre Hypnôse Stylo in Taupe Quartz Swatch

Taupe Quartz is a brown-grey colour with a pretty luminous finish. Like all of the other 8 shades in the line-up, it is highly pigmented but feels very light on the skin. This is a great shadow for easy daytime wear, but can also be built up or layered with other colours for a more dramatic night-time look.

Do you like the look of this?

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