Wednesday, 20 January 2016

The 15p Brush Cleanser Alternative.

If you're looking for a great budget brush cleanser, look no further. 

I've tried a lot of different products when it comes to cleaning my make up brushes. It's one of my least favourites chores, so I'm always on the hunt to find alternatives that will thoroughly clean my brushes in record time. I'd heard Nikkie (of Nikkie Tutorials) briefly talk about how 'hotel soap' was one of the best things to clean your brushes, so I thought I would put a plain white soap to the test on my brushes. I popped into my local Tesco and picked up their Everyday Value Soap at only 15p and, without being overly dramatic, IT IS THE BEST BRUSH CLEANSER I HAVE EVER USED!

Filthy brushes. Lovely. 

This soap is all you need guys. AND 15p!
I can't vouch for how this fares with sensitive skin as it does have a slight 'soap' fragrance, so if you are especially sensitive it may be best to check the ingredients. It does, however, imply that it can be used with babies, which implies to me that it should be sensitive skin friendly - but don't quote me on that! 
Ooh, working up a lather...

I use the soap in a similar way to how you would use a Beauty Blender Solid Cleanser, so I will draw my main comparison from that. Firstly, the price difference is HUGE - with the Beauty Blender Solid Cleanser coming in at around £15. It is also only a fraction of the size and quite simply just awkward to store, whereas the Tesco soap can just be popped in a soap dish to the side. As the soap bar is so much larger, it is a lot easier to work up a lather, too! 

I really struggle to see why solid make up cleansers cost so much after trying this. Personally I think this is better than the Beauty Blender Solid Cleanser, so much so that I feel a little bit angry for having potentially paid quite a bit to be sold what was essentially a teeny bit of soap. 

If you have a particularly stubborn foundation that you can't shift, then maybe you would need a little extra help still (although I am yet to find a cleansing product which does any better). A little drop of Olive oil does the trick to help lift it off before you give it a good clean with soap though. 

Ah, all clean.. that's better. 

I am honestly totally blown away with how good this is for cleaning brushes and will be in no rush to try any more over-priced soaps any time soon. I really hope I can convince at least one of you to pick it up - it's only 15p so no loss if you aren't a fan (although, I'm pretty sure you will be!)




Sunday, 17 January 2016

Some Changes.

Hi Everybody.

I thought I would write a quick catch up post today, and also to detail my new blog schedule which *fingers crossed* I will be sticking to.

Life is getting very busy. If you didn't already know, I'm in the last term of my degree (BA Business and Management w/ Finance if you're wondering). I'm also doing another diploma alongside this, attempting to maintain my blog and, obviously, I have a naughty toddler on my hands, too!

So to throw another spanner into the works, I'm also going back to work. I've taken a part time job where I used to work, so I'll be back in the office after 2 years, eek! So I'll be there 2.5 days a week, and Uni 2.5 days a week.

There are a few reasons why I've decided to go back to work. Firstly, and most obviously, money. I'm a student so I only have my student loan coming in, which barely even covers nursery fees. So it will be nice to have a bit of extra cash. Secondly, in mid-March I'll finish my lectures / seminars, so it will be great to actually have something productive to do with this time and give my mind a break from revision. Finally, I'm planning on going back to work full time in the summer, so it's going to help mentally prepare me for being away from Archer all week.

SO, with this extra load on my plate, I thought I had better set myself a schedule for the blog. I've decided that realistically, I don't think I'll be able to post more than twice a week for the next couple of months.

So I'm going to post on Wednesdays and Sundays at 8am. This is the first time I've restricted myself to a schedule, so I really hope I can keep it up!

Back soon!




Wednesday, 13 January 2016

DIOR AIRFLASH: Airbrush In A Can?

Dior Airflash (£33.50) has been on my radar ever since Jeffree Star raved about it years ago on Instagram. As far as I know, it's one of his favourite foundations so when I was invited to a Dior event recently at Debenhams in Cardiff, I had to have it. 

Being on the extreme end of of the pale skinned spectrum, I obviously opted for the lightest shade of Ivory. This is probably still a tad too dark for my skin, and slightly too neutral where I suit a cool-toned base best, but all is not lost as I know this will be the perfect foundation for me when the summer rolls around. 

So this foundation can be used in a number of ways - either use it on its own sprayed directly on to the face for an easy, natural base, spray over foundation to make it extra high coverage and flawless, or spray onto a beauty blender / brush and apply that way. It's not often you get such versatility in foundations, so I found this to be a big selling point! 

You also get a lot more product than a normal foundation - 70ml! That's at least double what most foundations offer. This is mainly to account for the spray that get's lost during use, but if you're nifty with it then you can definitely make the most out of it. 

At the moment I use this when I'm going for a full coverage, night on the town type make up (which, unfortunately, happens less than I would like!). When I use it over a base foundation it helps to bronze me up slightly (yes, Ivory is bronzing up for me!) and boost my coverage which is great! I then go in with concealer to highlight where needed. 

It may be a bit gimic-y, but actually the Dior Airflash is a great multi-use product and will certainly go a long way. My only downside is the poor colour range as I would love to wear this on it's own during the cooler months, too!

Have any of you tried this? What do you think?




Monday, 11 January 2016

The Three Hardest Things I've Done.

Well... this photo is pretty mis-leading right? No I have not joined the armed forces, I just thought it looked pretty badass. 

A bit of a different post today. I sometimes like to think about things I've accomplished to help put the 'bad times' into perspective, when they really aren't that bad. There are three things that really stand out as being the hardest things I've done. I hope this post doesn't come across too 'first world problems', I've been pretty lucky to have not had any really bad tragedy in my life... these are just the things that have presented the biggest challenges to me.

1. Learning to Drive
This may seem like a standard part of growing up or adulthood to most people, but for me learning to drive was my biggest struggle. Some people (especially my boyfriend) struggle to understand driving phobias, but to put it bluntly when I'm driving I feel like I'm in charge of some kind of death machine which I shouldn't be allowed in. I struggled with driving lessons, clocking up about 45 hours between 3 different instructors, and when it came to my driving test I was a nervous wreck. The most nervous I had ever been about anything (and I get nervous a lot...). I was convinced I would fail, that I aggravate other drivers and that I wasn't safe on the roads. I passed my test with only 1 minor, which helped me gain confidence all for about 5 minutes. 1 year down the line and I still HATE driving. I don't think it's something I will ever feel comfortable doing, so actually keeping up with it and finally getting my pink license is definitely the top of my list of hardest things I've done.

2. Giving Birth
I think this one is pretty obvious. Nothing can prepare you for the pain of childbirth. My labour started quickly and I was having frequent contractions for maybe 12 or 13 hours before I went to theatre. I would liken my labour to being stabbed in the stomach with a big rusty pole and being constantly refused the pain relief you know is there. To make matters worse the 3 weeks that followed were filled with agony, being unable to sit down and having my nipples destroyed by a very hungry baby who was causing me agonising pain! He definitely owes me one, that's for sure! (Still not as hard as learning to drive, I hope this helps you to understand how much I hate driving....)!

3. Becoming a Drop Out
Actually, becoming a drop out wasn't that hard. In fact, I was pretty awesome at it. I was really good at not attending lectures and partying every. single. night. But accepting that I was a drop out was a lot harder and trying to figure out what I was going to do with my life. Accepting all the money I wasted on a bit of a degree and deciding to move back to the city to work in a grimy nightclub instead. I'm so so glad I did (I mean, what the hell was I doing to do with a Music and Maths degree anyway? What a waste of time!) I went back to Uni, to do a useful course a few years later when I felt a lot more 'ready' (albeit pregnant....) and it's definitely worked out for the best.




Monday, 4 January 2016

Blogging Overwhelm...

Blogging, and social media for that matter, are overwhelming. I want to be sharing my '2016 blogging goals' like many other bloggers, but this isn't something I feel like I'm able to get my head around right now.

Doubt slips very easily into my mind... What even is my niche? Does anyone even read this? Why am I doing this? How am I supposed to be active on all these social media whilst simultaneously being a Mum and finishing my degree? WHY DON'T I HAVE A SODDING INSTAGRAM THEME?!

Part of my wants to take a back-seat, create good content and focus on the bigger things, and part of me wants to go in heads first, strategise and post, post, post. Finding the time for either right now is difficult.

I'm going to keep up with my One Hour Blog Challenge for now. But hey, 2016. I'm still here.

I'm working on it.

I have all the enthusiasm, but not much focus. Just give it time....

(P.S. I did post about my 2016 New Years Resolutions though... Give them a read here)