What’s in My Travel Makeup Bag?

Travel Makeup

So tomorrow morning I will be getting up stupidly early for a Saturday, hopping in my friend’s car and heading on a girls trip up to Scotland. I will be posting a little travel diary once I’m back as well as a travel toiletries next week, but I thought I would start with the simplest my travel makeup bag.

I just want to start with the bag, which is a personalised bag from Not on The High Street. It’s a hand size that helps me not over pack but still fits plenty in and I love the aesthetic of it.

Travel Makeup - Personalised War Paint Makeup Bag

The focus of the products chosen is products I love, multipurpose and ones that are reliable. It’s always the golden rule for myself when travelling is wherever possible never take a new product, take ones you know that work and you are comfortable using so you have no mishaps when you only have a small collection of products to use.

Travel Makeup Face

For my base for this trip I am using the L’Oreal Paris Infallible 24-Hour Matte Foundation in 10 Porcelain, with a high matte long lasting coverage I know I can use this for a day look or for a fuller on night on the town look. Also with the plastic tube is more practical for travel than the glass ones as it won’t break and it’s not bulky. To Finish up my base fully I have my old faithful collection productions in the form of the Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer in 1 Fair and Collection Primed & Ready Invisible Setting Powder. The final item for my face is the Sleek Face Form Pallet in Fair, an unsurprising favourite just simply due to the fact it is 3 products in one and I can just use it all week with very little fuss.

Travel Makeup Random

For my eyeshadow, I am using two of my smaller go to pallets with every day subtle to dramatics covered in the No 7 Mini Eye Pallet and cute shimmer shades with the Fleur De Force Quad Eyeshadow in 020 Lunar Rose. Although both nude tones I feel as though I have a nice range of colours with these two as well as a range of looks going for the eyeshadow eyeliner look I have everything I need in this compact form. To finish of my eyes I am taking my only newer product as I had no choice using the L’Oreal Paris Mega Volume Miss Baby Roll Mascara, however I have used it a few times and I am enjoying it. A full review will be sure to come later. To complete my look, I cannot forget the brows and my fast favourite item in my makeup draw the Freedom Duo Brow Powder in Medium Brown could not have been left at home.

Travel Makeup Eyes

I haven’t included lip products or brushes, as I will literally pick lip products as I finish my packing and mix it with whatever currently in my bag, as I have been feeling bold recently and my lip products have been travelling everywhere with me. Still be sure to keep your eyes peeled over on Instagram for photos of my trip and the odd selfie or two.

Gwen

xx

Live: Day in the Life

Start as we mean to go on? Nah I had such aspirations, but it is now 1 am on Tuesday morning and I’ve written nothing as I’ve got so distracted by watching old full set shows of my favourite bands on YouTube, that we seem to be in this position.

So I came up with a fun idea to make up for the lack of proper post. Tomorrow (Wednesday 12th), I will be posting a live Day in the Life on my instagram all day, join me as I go to work, get ready and hit the gym for my weekly pilates session. Just be sure to check out my instagram account throughout the day from 7am, find my account here.

Untitled

Hope to see you there!

Gwen

xx

 

 

5 Tips For Productive Blogging

5 tips for productive blogging

We all have a slump with blogging, once and a while and sometimes you need to push through and get back on it. All in all I have never hated blogging but sometimes you hit a wall and find it difficult to create new posts. So seeing as I have just got out of my rut, I thought I would share what has worked for me.

  1. Make notes when inspiration hits. If you sit and force yourself to come up with ideas, they won’t come. I make notes when the inspiration hits, either on your phone, notebook or in my case I always carry my planner so I have a section in the back I dedicate to blog idea and I have a note book for review notes and inspiration. Just don’t force it and capture what you can.
  2. Set time aside. I am one of those that makes notes all the time, so when it comes to writing my actual post I can string together all my notes and don’t have to worry about writers block. Saying that I always make sure that I set aside a specific time or day for getting my writing, photo taking and editing or scheduling done. If I don’t plan the time I spend most of my time saying to myself “oh I’ll finish it later”, but never do. I often find Sunday morning or a Thursday evening are some of the times work best for me, find a time that works for you and regularly stick to it you’ll work better than the ad hoc approach.
  3. Have a plan. I am a big planner and organiser and this is key for me with blogging as well as everything else in my life. In terms for my actual blog I strive from scheduling, I aim to post every Tuesday and Friday, so I note out the date that I will post on for any given month. The last two slots of the month are always dedicated for a collective haul and a monthly favourites and the rest of my posts get built up from there finding a balance for content with what I want to write and what I can commit to that month.

As well as a plan for content before I sit down to work on my blog I like to list out everything that needs doing, even into the smallest tasks. Each post has similar things that need doing but I find that if I write it out one by one I feel more accomplished at the end of my blogging session and I ensure nothing is missed. Added bonus of list writing you don’t waste the first 45 minutes doing nothing but getting distracted.

  1. Dress for success. I am aware this sounds weird, but I’m going along the lines of advise you often see for working at home so why not blogging. When I used to have a blogging day I used to dress super slouchy, sometimes even in pjs but instead of been comfortable to write I just found myself demotivated wanting to do nothing. So stay in your normal clothes if you are planning to blog in the evening, or if you are having a blogging day then, get ready for the day like you do the rest of the time. Trust me it will be worth it.
  2. No pressure. At the end of the day though, don’t pile on the pressure. It may be good to commit the time to write and compose content for your blog but if you aren’t feeling up for it don’t do it. If you pressure yourself into creating content you will won’t necessarily make good content. If you aren’t enjoining it or it is stressing you out, simply take some time out.

So those are my tips for how I ensure I am a productive blogger, let me know in the comments how you try to be a productive blogger.

Gwen

xx

My Personal Planner 2017-18

personal-planner-2017-18

Who else is slightly obsessed with planners and stationary? I cannot get enough I usually have two planners as well as a to-do list note book for work, is it a little overkill? Maybe but i like to be organised.

Somehow I ended up doing my personal planners March to March but it’s a weird thing that works for me at this time, I mean it doesn’t really matter as long as you find it useful. Last year was my first Personal Planner, you can see an in depth look in my First Impressions or Follow Up Review  post. I thought I would show my new one to show what I chose this time and why.

This time the mood took me for a bit of gold, to add a little bit of sparkle and glam into my life. I really love how this turned out, I’m yet to try and create my own cover but there are such great options on the website I have never truly felt a need to. In terms of inside I went slightly different form last year not going quite as mad with all of the different options available. Compared to my last one which was pink and colourful I definitely went for a much more muted pallet internally opting for blacks and greys, I just often found the colours clashed and now the odd pop of colour can add emphasis opposed to a distraction. Hopefully in future I won’t find it too dull but right now I am loving this more neutral feel for 2017/18. I do wish though a gold/white inside could have been chosen though just having a simple bright white planned may have been super cute as well.

personal-planner-2017-18-page-choices

In terms of module choices I kept some of my choices with whether and dinners remaining put and swapping out a tick list for a straight forward to-do list my weekly pages look similar to last year. The biggest changes was with my additional pages, I still kept my month view I loved using it mainly for a look back on the month it’s a nice summary page and good for forward planning. While at the back I kept it simple removing the year overview as I never used it and option for lined paper, soduku and blank pages. Last time I went for a bit of everything and didn’t necessarily use it so I kept it straight forward this time. Actually the main reason for the blank pages is that I didn’t having a lined back page last time, and I’m so glad it’s perfect and unmarked now.

personal-planner-2017-18-moudle-choices

I’m so happy with how it turned out this time and although slightly pricier than some planners, last year I used my Personal Planner consistently as I got to pick options that worked for me. Other planner in the past I didn’t use as I couldn’t get them to work for me no matter how pretty it was. So if you want a good quality and reasonably priced custom planner I’d really recommend checking out Personal Planner on their website here. Now please excuse me while I fill it up and admire it for a little while.

Gwen

xxx

2017 Beauty Resolutions

New year, New ME! I am not that person, I stopped making resolutions when I realised that I would never stick to them but this year I’ve come up with a few beauty specific ones that I feel like I want to stick to. Also by writing them here and hopefully by tracking my progress through posts I might be able to stick to them that little bit better. So here are my beauty resolutions for 2017.

I shall use up what I have . . . We all know it’s hard to resist picking up the latest hyped product, or resisting a beautiful eyeshadow you’ve swatched while at the makeup counter but do we really need all of these things. I am always gulty of having several mascaras on the go at once, a few to many primers or foundations. For some products you need range, but others you don’t so this year I am going to buy less but use more. Hopefully you’ll be seeing less hauls of more of the same, I will be resisting impulse purposes and using my makeup. In 2017 I will ditch the empties for progress on using up makeup and skincare, I will use up and save money.

I shall always remove my makeup completely . . . This is something I have been trying to do for ages but some days I just cannot be arsed in all honesty. So, I’m going to make it my aim in 2017 to everyday to at least commit to some sort of skincare routine where I am definitely removing all makeup in its entirety. This year I will stop being lazy and look after my skin.

I shall push the boundaries . . . If you read my lipstick diaries series (part one, part two, part three) last year, you will of seen me go on a mini journey of exploration and self-confidence and I pushed myself to try something new. I’m so glad I tried it and I think this year I will try to expand my boundaries in terms of makeup, try new techniques, colours and just generally play you never know what you might discover and grow. I just need to work out where to start . . .

Three simple resolutions for 2017, that hopefully I can commit to. I will be sure to keep you all posted as we all know that’s sometimes the best way to keep on track

 

Gwen

xx

See You in 2017

Cristina Alonso

Evening,

Just a quick post tonight, as although I’d love to continue posting over the festive period I feel as though it is not possible this year with all of my plans. It’s a shame but at this time of year its important to spend time with your loved ones so this seems like a much better idea.

So I just want to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Take the time to look back on 2016, spend time with others and look forward to 2017.

All the Best,

Sign Off

Millionaires Cheesecake Recipe

millionaries-cheesecake

It’s been a good long while since I’ve posted recipe on my blog, I think in 2017 I might try to make it a monthly thing but we will have to wait and see as lighting is difficult etc. Anyway I have a super decedent and tasty recipe today, since I’ve had to cut egg completely out of my diet after been diagnosed with an intolerance desert has become more difficult especially simply picking one up but since discovering how easy it is to make my own I’ve never looked back.

millionaires-cheesecake-recipie

This is a slightly stepped up cheese cake but skip the caramel and ganache layers and you have a tasty and simple cheesecake. Now onto the ingredients, you will need:

  • 200g Crushed Digestive Biscuits;
  • 100g Melted Butter;
  • 397g Can of Caramel*(*you can make your own from a second can of condensed milk and sugar, but this was easy. Find out the full recipe here )
  • 397g can of Condensed Milk;
  • 250g of Mascarpone;
  • Lemon Juice;
  • 200g Double Cream;
  • 200g Dark Chocolate.

You will also need a cake tin with a removable base Ii used a 20cm base), simply line with greaseproof paper, and a food processor is ideal for this task.

 

Biscuit Base

  1. Break up the biscuits into slightly smaller pieces and crush, either with a rolling pin or a food processor. Crush until split up into small pieces.
  2. Place in a microwave proof bowl and simply place in the microwave a few seconds at a time until fully melted. Then mix the butter and biscuit crumbs together, either by hand in a bowl or put the butter in the food processor and let it do the work.
  3. Once thoroughly mixed move the mixture into the cake tin, use your hands to press it down smooth and ensure the mixture reaches all of the sides. Chill for 10 minutes.

 

Second Layer

  1. Pour out the caramel onto the biscuit base, ensure its spread evenly. Return to the fridge for another 10 minutes.

 millionaires-cheesecake

Cheesecake Layer

  1. Add the mascarpone and condensed milk together, whisk together once the mixture is smooth add in the lemon juice. Lemon juice is essential to make the mixture thicken, add a little bit at a time until the mixture starts to thicken up it should be thick and creamy.
  2. Pour the mixture into the tin and allow to cool for 1 to 2 hours.

 

Chocolate Ganache

  1. Pour the double cream into a pan and heat gently, once it started to warm through break up the chocolate and drop into the mixture. Keep the heat low and stir constantly until everything is fully mixed.
  2. Once satisfied with the mixture poor into a jug and leave on the side to cool down to room temperature.
  3. Once at room temperature and the cheesecake layer has stiffened in the fridge poor the ganache on the top and return to the fridge.
  4. Cool in the fridge for at least another 2 hours in the fridge, although this we’ve found it tastes best after being chilled for at least 24hours.

millionaires-cheesecake-layers

 

Once fully firm, remove for the fridge and serve, nomnom. Enjoy and let me know if you try it out.

Sign Off

Blink and You’ll Miss It: Life Update

simple-floral-pattern-background

Hi Guys,

I’ve been fairly quiet here on the blog the past few weeks which I regret but I’m excited to get back into things in November and aim to get everything back on track. So I thought I’d start a little bit of getting back on track with a life update.

 

Work

So let’s start with work as it starts to ramp up to peak, it just gets so stressful. It’s not necessarily always my role but there is definitely that general stressed feeling floating around. I’m so glad I work with a great bunch of people, so no matter how stressful it gets you can have a laugh. I’ve also been put on a mentoring scheme which I’m looking forward to, it’s great to have something like this at the start of my career and it will be interesting to see what my outcome will be.

 

Diet

I’ve recently found out I’m intolerant to egg whites and have gone on a full on egg exclusion diet, it’s taken some getting used to as there’s egg in a lot of things you’ve never thought it would be in. I’ve had a problem with certain egg products for years like egg noodle and quiche but cutting it out completely has made me think more about what I’m eating and there’s a lot more things I cannot eat. Saying that I’ve tried out some fun recipes and enjoyed making things from scratch as a number of preservatives are made from egg, I never realised some things were so easy to make and I’m tempted to start sharing some recipes on my blog.

 

Personal Life

It’s not been an especially great month for my personal life and the people I know and although none of it massively affects me you take a knock. At the start of October my best friend’s dad was diagnosed with cancer, he was always about when I was growing up and although they thought it might be coming when it was confirmed it was quite a shock. So we’ve spent some time having some girly fun night out and spent time together it’s all about being there for those you love. Similarly my boyfriend’s grandfather died unexpectedly, encroaching 90 it’s never totally unexpected but it’s horrible to loose family member so I spent a lot of the month being the supportive friend and girlfriend really trying to be there for them. However bad things always come in threes and in the last couple of days my uncle has being diagnosed with motor neuron disease, which is truly a horrible disease and you know what’s coming even if you don’t know how quickly it will happen.

I think these things make you appreciate life more, what you have and the people in it. Its a case of blink and you’ll miss it. Take the time to spend time with others and appreciate what you have.

So with all of this going on I really just needed to take some time out and shut off, I love my blog but I think it was important to have some me time with no schedules and no pushing myself. I’ve really missed blogging so I’m coming back in November with a vengeance to create some great content that you will love.

Sign Off

Getting Organised: Blogging

Last Friday I covered getting organised in my life in general (available here), today is how I am now organising my blog. Earlier in the year I showed you my notebook, solely dedicated to the organisation of my blog which although a great idea proved to be clunky I didn’t always use it and I just found I never referred to it. I find organisation is a bit of trial and error and this system I used a base for the past few month and have found a great system to keep me on top of things.

Spreadsheet Everything: I use a few spreadsheets but my core document has a sheet for a calendar and a checklist of upcoming posts, as I plan to post every week on Tuesdays and Fridays as well as weekly social media posts. This is super visual and helps prompt ideas as well as time frames for me to finish certain posts or tasks. You can also plan far in advance, you can assign seasonal posts when you think about them and easily find them again at a later date.

Weekly To Do Lists: As I mentioned in the life organisation post, I write weekly to do lists, not necessarily for a certain days but its covers the post I want to sort out that week. I also break it down into the individual tasks for that particular post that have to be done, by breaking it down it seems less daunting as well as making sure you don’t miss anything.

blog-organisation-to-do-lis

Making Notes: I am always making notes either specifically post based or post ideas, these are either in my planner or phone. My notes can vary between the odd word, post title, product thoughts or even mini paragraphs ready for blog posts. This is key to keeping me organised as once I come to write the posts the majority of the post is already there. It is one of the most important things for me in keeping organised as the whole sitting down to write a post is not quite such a big tasks.

What helps you get organised with your blog? Let me know in the comments below so we can all be more productive bloggers when we attempt to juggle life, blog and work.

Sign Off

Getting Organised: Life

getting-organised-life

September is back to school/study season and although I am now working it always feels as though it is the perfect time to get organised. As work ramps up to peak, the need to organise social occasions and just generally fitting everything in. So this is my month of getting generally organised, this post will cover how I am getting organised with life and work in general with the help of my trusty notebook and my still in use Personal Planner (First Impressions and Full Review).

Daily Planning: As you’ve seen a few times before I am currently using the Personal Planner, and I have to say the layout and setting works for me, as a list maker I can put in either my day in order or make to do lists and notes. I’m such a daily planner, I sit down at the end of every day and sort everything I need to do for the following day. Using post-it notes for the weeks key ideas, or future events in case plans change etc.  Daily planning is a great wind down idea and really helps me organise my thoughts of the day.

Daily and Weekly To Do Lists: Who doesn’t love a good list? I have to say as I’ve got older I’ve grown to appreciate the list more and more, there is more that has to be fit in and cannot be forgotten so here comes in not only my planner list but my to do notebook. The first side covers work, with daily tasks and individual tasks for those days which can adapt as the week develops and the following day is filled out one day at a time so nothing is missed. While the right hand side of the page each week, covers blog, cleaning and general other tasks. I use this not for specific days tasks (that’s reserved for my planner) but for tasks which need to be done that week but that don’t have a specific day it has to be completed.

getting-orgainsed-to-do-list

Monthly Overview: Although my planner is for forward and daily organisation, I like to use my monthly overview to reflect it tends to offer no use for me when looking ahead but it’s great to reflect I can note key events or just general things which happened over the course of the month and it’s a nice way to look back without been dragged down my all of my lists, notes and plans.

Nothing Electronic?: Nope, nothing electronic here. I use a variety of online/computer based calendars and to dos at work and still find nothing works better than a scribbled on desk pads. The simple act of writing it down or having something sat in front of you, I never pay attention to digital organisation. I will cover next time how I use excel in the organisation of my blog, as this is simple calendar use and is more of a reference document than anything else.

So that’s how I keep my hetic life organised and how I keep on top of things, how do you keep your life organised. Are you a planner junkie or do you manager to magically keep on top of things, let me know in the comments?

Sign Off