Summer Scents 🌻

A blitz of perfume is the finishing touches to any outfit, whether it’s glamorous or casual.

So many fragrances, so little time!

Each aroma creates a different charisma depending on your mood and the occasion.

Perfumes have the power to transport you to a favourite place, time or person.

Check out my top picks!


MY TOP 5 SUMMER FRAGRANCES  ♥♥

 

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1) DIPTYQUE: VETYVERIO

 

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Price:

Eau de Toilette: £70 – £90

Eau de Parfum: £115 

This is one of my most favourite perfumes ever!

It’s slightly more upmarket and niche but the smell is absolutely divine and well worth the price tag! It reminds me of that smell you get if you’ve ever walked through a forest after its been raining. Natural and fresh with a hint of sweetness.

You can buy this from any ‘Diptyque’ store/online or Space NK.

‘Diptyque’ is a luxury brand born in Paris, 1961. They pride themselves on being a luxury brand specialising in signature candles. The product became so popular they decided to branch out in the world of Perfume and instead of just your home smelling heavenly you can as well.


2) DKNY: PURE

 

 

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Price: 

Eau de Parfum: £28.50

This is my go to everyday perfume (and popular with the boys)!

It’s a floral smell with a hint of vanilla that keeps this fragrance soft and feminine. It’s also light, so a spritz of this revitalises you for those humid days in Sun.

I like this bottle; its clean and simple much like the scent itself. I can imagine it perched on a minimalist interior designed bedroom next to a Japanese Bonsai plant.


3) CHLOE: LOVE 

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Price:

Eau de Parfum: £53

I’d say this is more of a Summer in evening scent. It’s a little bit heavier than the others with Iris being the dominant note. I love the powdery smell too; I’d say that’s what makes this perfume so beautifully distinct.

‘Chloe’ is a well-known designer brand, and its fragrance remains a firm favourite in the prestigious Make Up Halls of Harrods.

‘Chloe: Love’ compliments a warm evening with great friends and an Aperol Spritz.

One extra brownie point is that it has a small chain attached to the lid so you can’t lose it somewhere in the depths of your handbag.


4) ELIZABETH ARDEN: GREEN TEA

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Price:

Eau de Toilette: £24

This reminds me of my teenage years. Its young, fresh and vibrant!

Elizabeth Ardens demographic is around 30+ years old. ‘Green Tea’ I’d say targets a younger woman; it’s fun, inexpensive and exudes citrus notes.

Base notes include bergamot and Jasmine which compliments the distinct lemon zest essence.

This perfume couples nicely with my Summer Time Make Up Look.

Summer Time Sunrise Make Up!


5) AQUA DI PARMA: ARANCIA DI CAPRI 

 

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Price:

Eau de Toilette: £66

This fragrance carries me away to a beautiful yacht in the middle of the Mediterranean sea with David Gandy by my side (a girl can dream).

This tantalising fruity splash invigorates whilst at the same time adding an element of spicy aroma. It’s unisex so make sure your Boyfriend/Brother or Dad doesn’t get his hands on it!

Its radiant Mandarin and Orange top notes are luxuriously exotic. And the blue packaging mimics the aqua blue Mediterranean Sea.

I’m going to Tuscany soon so I think this perfume will be perfect to take with me!

Enjoy the Sun!

Warm regards

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Unavailable Men 💔

 

We’ve all been there.

You think you’ve met the most perfect man, everything is wonderful, he dotes on you night and day. Then all of a sudden the honeymoon period comes to a crashing halt without so much as a hint about what went ‘wrong’. You wrack your brains why this ‘great guy’ has turned into an Icicle.

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Don’t worry you’re not alone! 

Some of the most beautiful, kind, strong women I know have fallen victim to these Conmen. Here’s how the scene plays out in a nutshell.

  • Boy meets girl.
  • Boy comes on strong.
  • Girl isn’t sure if she likes him.
  • Boy bombards/chases/lavishes girl.
  • Girl starts to come round.
  • They start a ‘relationship’.
  • Boy turns cold.
  • Girl can’t understand what went wrong and chases, pushing boy away more.
  • Girl becomes infatuated which feeds boys ego.
  • Girl gets fed up and gives up.
  • Boys ego is hurt he resumes chasing her again.
  • Girl thinks this time there will be commitment.
  • Boy buggers off again.
  • Girl is heartbroken and either chases him again or starts the same cycle with a new boy.

Sound familiar? Don’t stress we can break the cycle!

Warning Signs

 

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This type of man can smell vulnerability a mile away, it’s an instinct they seem to be born with. If you secretly wish a Knight in Shinning Armour will appear and rescue you from your life then your in jeopardy of becoming a target. A partner should be the cherry on the top of an already wonderful and fulfilling life, if he’s the foundation then you’re on serious shaky grounds!

Of course they don’t come with a sign on their head saying ‘Unavailable’. In fact they initially give the impression they are ‘Over Available’; so it makes it more difficult to decipher between a genuine gentlemen and a cowboy.

From my experience and other women that I know there’s been persistent symptoms that unavailable men display.

They come on strong!!!!!

You’re not too fussed about them. Perhaps you’re still trying to get over the last unavailable guy. But they are charming … very charming! They give the impression they have life figured out, they have a successful career, they are comfortable in their own skin. All of these things are very attractive to a woman seeking outside validation, and probably things she wishes for her own life.

But I have learnt the hard way this is all smoke and mirrors. They hide behind a character and seem to struggle with or be scared of the truth and letting people see who they really are. (Possibly they don’t like themselves too much).

Most of the time their success at work is somewhat fabricated or at the very least exaggerated. If you dig a bit deeper, or speak to their work colleagues you will normally find big massive holes and inconsistencies in the boastful story you have been led to believe; even if they do have some level of success. I’ve dated guys in the entertainment industry and idolised them as I believed I wanted to be where they are (now I realise I really don’t!!) I was exposed to their work and had to use my own acting skills to say how much I ‘enjoyed’ it. Unfortunately by that point I was already hooked and ignored what my intuition was telling me. I concluded ‘I’m probably just wrong’, and tried to repress the facts. I’ve was instructed by one guy to tell people had the privilege of knowing him, you can imagine that cringe worthy moment when they had no idea who he was. Complete Bullsh*tter in more than one area of his life clearly.

As for being comfortable in their own skin… no…they’re not. I know they exude confidence and share their ‘vulnerable’ side with you, but 9 times out of 10 its a strategic move rather than coming from a place of authenticity.  The blow of realising you’ve been duped (maybe again) is a bitter pill to swallow. But keep in mind your openness and willingness to love will one day be rewarded by the right man who doesnt fear the truth or showing you who he really is; and that ladies is what you call strength in a man. Lot’s of woman have fallen for this scam, it’s not a reflection on you, and it’s certainly not your fault. You can’t change someone like that, no woman can. They have to face their own demons themselves.

Another red flag is pressure. I’ve even been called ‘prude’ or ‘old fashioned’ because I wanted to take things slowly, they claim to find you so incredibly irresistible they can’t resist you any longer. This is Bullcr*p, if a guy respects you and wants to get to know you better he will wait until you’re comfortable. Full stop.

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A lot of the time, it’s the kind of guy you wouldn’t look at twice. Or maybe there is a spark; either way their relentlessness is somewhat impressive. If I could pursue the gym with that amount of energy then I’d be a very happy gym bunny! You become a conquest, and the driving force is their ego. Look, I don’t want to mud sling (too much) I’m sure in their odd way they had warm feelings for you, but unfortunately it’s just not good enough. I used to get jealous and think ‘why can they commit to that woman and not to me?’ But then I heard on the grapevine they didn’t their treat partners very well either because the problem lies in them, not you. Thank God we didn’t become official because it sounded like hell! There are many reasons they commit for a while …mutual friends, timing, getting older or the other woman liked him more in the first place . But I’ve realised people can still be unavailable in a ‘committed’ relationship, and more often than not, they will be putting the feelers out for potential prey even then.

Be careful of the way they speak about ex partners, if this makes your shackles go up, that’s not a good sign and you should consider aborting ship! They use overly sexual ‘jokes’ and ‘comments’, and proclaim to be God’s gift to women (can we keep the receipt please?).  They speak about their ‘conquests’ and hint towards being a ladies man (this may also be done quite subtly).  An egotistic attitude in this manner is disrespectful to women and reeks of insecurity rather than sexual prowess.

Sometimes there’s a spark, and other times feelings develop over time. A lot of time I thought I liked a guy, but actually I’d been worn down by a relentless unavailable ego. If I’m honest I was lonely and male company was nice so I was flattered by the bombardment of compliments, now I realise these men are shape-shifters. They transform themselves into whatever you want or need just so long as they get what they want.

But you must take responsibility for choosing your own partner. I’ve found myself chasing and fretting over a guy I didn’t even like that much in the first place! It’s the feeling of abandonment that I cant handle. If I honestly look at my history I didn’t take much responsibility for my partner choices. I’d go as far as to say I never had any true and authentic feelings for any of them. Sure, I had warm feelings towards them, but these guys were transitional. I probably need to look at my own tendencies in the objectification of men. Even though when they ‘abandoned’ me I felt like my world was falling in on itself, I could forget about them within a day if another unavailable man came along. As long as I had someone who was prepared to morph into the role of ‘Knight in Shinning Armour’ I felt I had a lifeline. In actual fact the AWOL behaviour ignites the ‘Fantasy relationship’ because they become whoever you want them to be without having to face reality.

There’s always a honeymoon period when you are getting your needs met, and it’s exciting, and you feel like you’re on the same page then… BAM!! That coffee date you’d arranged with him, he’s forgotten about. ‘Oh that’s not like him, I’m sure he was just busy or something’… you let it slide. Then his texts to you change; they used to read more like a romantic novel, flooded with kisses at the end and declarations of love but are now blunt and short. Completely out of character right? He drops in just enough appetisers to keep you hanging on. This is weird? It must be something you’ve done wrong? So you confront him and he flurries you with a mass of apologises and excuses which sound valid enough?? By this time you’ve fallen and want things to go back to how they were. And in my experience, I just couldn’t handle the fact it’s happened again.

This is the perfect storm for obsessions to seep into your mind and highjack every thought in your head. It brings up past toxic feelings of abandonment, and fears that you’re not good enough and unlovable. This is all crap no matter how convincing or set in stone it tells you it is! The more the girl chases the more distant the boy becomes; he can become distant because he knows she’ll be there if he decides to come back whilst possibly keeping his options open. She tries to ‘fix’ the situation but does more damage than good whilst losing her self respect in the mean time. She acts as the perfect ego boost, doesn’t set boundaries so he doesn’t need to put in a fraction of the work he did before; he has her ‘under control’ to meet his selfish needs.

It’s best to try and suss red flags out before it gets to this level as when the obsession kicks in itself it’s a slippery slope from there.

I’m sure you’ve heard the expression that ‘no one can love you until you love yourself’. I agree with this to a certain extent. I think loving yourself is a continual journey with no ‘end point’. There will always be that inner critic trying to sabotage your thinking, life challenges and knock backs that compromise how you feel about yourself. But I think you should at least like yourself enough to know you deserve to be comfortable and loved in a relationship. The more unavailable men you attract the more your boundaries are lowered as you are so desperate to be loved. But I’m sorry, those boundaries have to be pushed right back up! There ARE wonderful men out there who won’t make you doubt yourself, sleep with other women, put their needs first or whatever else they do. It’s not cool and you know it!

As Marilyn Monroe wisely said….

‘It’s far better to be unhappy alone, than unhappy with someone’

Hear, hear!

Whilst I don’t advocate being ‘unhappy alone’ I would say that its better to be on your own rather than searching for external validation. If you are unhappy I’d recommend taking a break from dating and work on your self. Then when you are in a better place you’re more likely to find a better man as you won’t be searching from a place of deficit.

After a while you’ll probably get bored of this situation being one sided. He always has an answer for everything, guilt trips you for calling bullsh*t and probably you’ll just get bored of playing cat and mouse. This is what I especially don’t like and I’m so happy this manipulative behaviour has actually been recognised and given a name.

GASLIGHTING!!!!

Dictionary Definition: To cause (a person) to doubt his or her sanity through the use of psychological manipulation.

You become angry about this coercive, damaging behaviour your on the receiving end of; which may I add is insidious because of it’s subtlety. You’ve been pushed off the pedestal and made to feel invisible without any explanation. You can’t understand why? You’re so hurt and angry but you sit on it because your main goal is to try and get him back. Though it’s akin to sitting on a Volcano. If you do explode you’re shamed even more!

I think they must all read from the same ‘How to be an Unavailable’ book!

Here’s a few crackers I’ve heard over time. The main purpose of these is to make you doubt your own sanity:

  • ‘I’m just going through a really tough time at the moment, I think you could be more understanding and patient’ (2 years later the exact same sentence).
  •  ‘I’ve got so much work on at the moment; I’ve got deadlines and pressure blah blah’ (Doesn’t stop you texting when it suits you and you want something though).
  • ‘I’m good to you! Look how much I’ve done for you!’ (Would hate to see how you treat your enemies then).
  • ‘I just want there to be honesty with us’ (After admitting he’s been with another woman…again).
  • ‘We weren’t official’ (An explanation for being with another woman after declaring he can’t wait for us to be together).
  • ‘I just need time’ (How does forever work for you?).
  • ‘You just get angry for no reason’ (You’re right! I’m not like this with anyone else but still I’m clearly unhinged whilst you’ve been the perfect gentleman).
  • ‘You’re so hard on yourself’ (Thanks you’ve contributed).
  • ‘You’ve been through such a hard time, I can’t even begin to understand how painful it must have been to lose your Mother at young age. It probably explains the way you react to things they way you do.’ (Yup, he brought my Mama into it).
  • ‘I’m not playing this game’ (Says the Game Master)
  • ‘I was going to do this, or that’ (Don’t worry I’ll just sit here and twiddle my thumbs and wait for you to put action to your words…. 90 years later)
  • ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about’ (Do you speak English? Because I do)
  • ‘My ex was crazy’ (Probably because you made her that way!)
  • ‘You’re paranoid’ (Ergh!)

This list goes on….

Also anything to do with talking up past relationships that he knows you wouldn’t like counts as manipulation. He was probably an arse to her too.

‘Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low-self esteem, make sure that you’re not surrounded by fools’.

– Sigmund Freud

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Next stage you become fatigued by having the carrot dangled in front of your face and so you back off. You don’t think he notices; he does (after a while). Surprise, surprise he comes running after you again with his tail between his legs. He suddenly transforms back into the Prince Charming you were originally wooed by…funny that. You are convinced you were too harsh as your conscience is targeted. You decide to give him another chance (and another and another). The fairy tale is revived and after lots of making up you are high on feeling loved and beautiful because by this time you’ve put him on a pedestal and given him magical qualities. He is the gatekeeper of your self esteem.

Though unfortunately it’s never long before the original cracks start to show. Nothing has been discussed so resentments are still bubbling beneath the surface. But it’s such a whirlwind and you’re scared of making him run off again so you wait for the right time.

Alcohol is a catalyst for bringing resentments to the boil. I’ve been guilty of this MANY times. Evening glasses of Red Wine were slowly turning into bottles before I noticed it was getting out of hand. I would shake with nerves before meeting a guy I ‘liked’. I used alcohol for confidence, but to be honest it’s never really agreed with me. There’s Alcoholism in the family, so I think I’m sensitive to reactions and quick changes in mood (to the sip I can change). I wouldn’t class myself as an Alcoholic but it’s something I have to be conscious of.

I did dry January, February and March. It was quite difficult as I had to confront the issues that the Alcohol was disguising …. like shyness! I now limit myself to two drinks a week, and don’t drink when dating as I don’t want it to cloud my judgement and be swayed by the pretence of love bombing.

Boy uses girls anger and hurt as an excuse to pull himself away again, instead of realising the pain they’ve caused and working through it. Man up! Girl feels awful again and blames herself for his disappearing act. She then protests her undying love for a man she wasn’t too fussed about in the first place and probably to be honest deep down still isn’t. It’s the rejection that stings; it’s old pain rearing its ugly head. These relationships are transitional; this man could be anyone. I will say this again …. THIS MAN COULD BE ANYONE you just want SOMEONE to be there. In some ways your both using off each other like a toxic co-dependency.

You deserve to have a stable loving relationship. And that doesn’t mean you have to settle for a guy who is swaying too much the other and lets you treat him like a doormat. You deserve passion, attraction, kindness, trust etc… there ARE men out there who embody these qualities, there’s no reason other women get to have a man like this and you don’t. Don’t let your relationships be based on smoke and mirrors.

I’ve heard from friends the transition into a stable relationship is a bit rocky at first. Mainly due to the fact they’re over vigilant for clues things will go ‘wrong’ after years of dealing with unavailable men. But these guys stick around, so the girls insecurity starts to suffocate. These men know how to treat women; they respect your needs, and are worth holding onto. And dare I say Husband and Baby Daddy material.

There may not be as much intensity at the start; but after a while you realise you mistook intensity for intimacy instead of what it actually was… a wrong match.

There is the Man Code which still remains the Holy Grail in trying to figure out these mythical creatures. But I’m sure even if we did get our hand on this code, it would make the Rosetta stone look like Pre-school reading!

Love yourself, like yourself, think you’re funny, smart, kind and beautiful because you are. You have lots of great qualities to offer in a relationship. Remind yourself of the good things life has given you. Put recovery first, cut out toxic people, be compassionate to your pain and insecurities.

A note on insecurity. Protect your vulnerabilities, only time will tell if its ok to share them in a loving and safe partnership. Some men use your insecurity as a weapon, but if it’s minimal in the first place they have nothing to use. Boundaries are your shield.

Of course you can still get duped, my picker is still slightly out of whack. But I’m attracting nicer, more decent guys who I genuinely like from the start. I sniff out the imposters quickly instead of hanging on hoping he’ll rescue me. I’m the ‘Dame in Shinning Swarovski’ coming to rescue myself.

After you have worked on yourself your love life will probably go  a little like this… unavailable, unavailable, available, unavailable, unavailable, available, available, unavailable…..then……..MR RIGHT!!!!

Unfortunately there are a few more frogs out there who need you to pucker up!

All will be well.

You will find love, and most importantly for yourself as well. Self esteem, and confidence is already inside you, it’s just clogged under layers of crap that other people have given you.

I want to do a shout out for these great women who have put their forces together and created a POWERHOUSE!

Natalie, I’ve been following for a while, she is the guru on relationships.

Having read her book ‘The Dreamer: And the Fantasy Relationship’. I related with this book so much to the point I felt empowered! But at the same time devastated to realise I’d been living in a bubble for such a long time. But when you know better you do better.

Zoe is a friend of mine, and an expert on anything to do with Mental Health; especially trauma. She also works as a Hypnotherapist in Harley Street.

These women are a dream team! I recently attended one of their seminars and my brain was throbbing by the end of it from having learnt so much. It was wonderful to see so many people in there wanting to learn and improve their lives and relationships. I was of course the cheerleader in the front row. See… (Blonde at the front).

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Natalie Lue: https://www.baggagereclaim.co.uk/

Zoe Clews: https://zoeclews-hypnotherapy.co.uk/

They have all the social media information that you need. So it’s easy keep track of what these ladies are up to and upcoming events. And hey, you’ll probably see me there too 😀

Well I hope that was informative. I feel like I babbled for England so I’ll let you go.

I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Do let me know how you get on!

Warmest Regards

 

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Summer Time Make Up! 🌅

 

I have literally just managed to claw myself out of the eye of the storm. I was hit hard by chronic low moods and anxiety; I have not slept properly, survived on takeaways and just felt all round blahhhh!

Even though I don’t feel 100% I don’t want to appear dishevelled, especially when the world of work demands a certain level of grooming, (not as much as the modelling days thank goodness!).

So these are my tips for looking bright and perky when your feeling anything but!

Firstly if you’ve not been sleeping or eating right and you’ve been relying on caffeine to get you through the day then your skin will lose its vitality.  If your like me, it will have a grey hue to it that sometimes I think requires a ‘Death becomes her’ makeover. But fear not… highlighting and colours are your friend, and will help you on your way towards capturing that perfect Summer Glow.

Back to basics.

  1. Drink plenty of water to hydrate the skin, this will plump the skin and put some life back into it.
  2. Next I exfoliate using ‘Balm Balm: Hibiscus Face Mask’. This product is amazing and organic! The beads are small but resilient, and don’t dissolve away like some other products I could mention so you can scrub away for as long as you like…. not too long though, you want some skin left at the end of it.
  3. After exfoliation I use a Body Shop facial mask called ‘Ethiopian Honey’… I love this as I tend to suffer from dry skin and eczema, so after the dead skin cells have been removed through exfoliation I indulge my skin by slathering on the mask. Admittedly it is rather sticky so I wouldn’t recommend sleeping in it over night.
  4. Next step is to use a Hyaluronic Acid Serum, ‘The Ordinary’ skincare range has an amazing one which revives the skin and gives a healthy glow. Hyaluronic Acid is renowned for drawing water to the skin and giving you baby soft skin.
  5. ‘Embryolisse’ is a wonderful cream. It has a milky consistency and smells divine! You can apply it thicker and use it as a mask, or a little bit less and it turns into an everyday moisturiser.
  6. Then the final product of my skincare range is sunscreen. I use between 30 to 50 SPF. I would rather prevent the signs of ageing rather than to try and fix it later on; sunscreen not only protects your skin from harmful UVA/B rays,  but also from other elements such as harsh winds, icy weather etc…everyone should be using sunscreen everyday, not matter what your age is. Some foundations have added SPF to their formulas but I don’t feel it’s enough, especially living in London; Free Radicals are the enemy and we must fight against them!!
  7. Onto the fun stuff! In the above photograph I haven’t worn a base, but I did use a self tan to give me a sun kissed look as my freckles have come out with the sun, which I used to hate but now I don’t mind. The product I used is ‘Xen-Tan’ which you can purchase from SpaceNK. Its a luxury product filled with antioxidants which is another weapon we can use in our artillery against the signs of ageing. I would recommend using a self tan specifically designed for the face vs the body version which can be slightly drying, due to the fact the skin on the body is slightly thicker than the face.
  8. I then dusted over some ‘MAC Bronzer: Mineralize Skin finish Natural’ in ‘Give me Sun!’. I used this all over my face for a healthy glow using a powder brush, then using a angle powder brush I trace under the cheekbones to sharpen them. If you’re unsure how to do this, strike a ‘Blue Steel’ pose in the mirror and where the cheeks are hollow that’s where to shade in . You can use a little bronze on the neck so it matches the face. This is not the time for the ombre look not matter how much I love it on hair, nails, lipstick etc…!
  9. To give me a Summer Time pick me up I applied a touch of blush to the apples the cheeks to give a healthy flush, which sometimes I find quite difficult to achieve with the less brighter colours. The current colour I use is ‘MAC: Blush’ in ‘Peony Petal. It’s a bright pink with a hint of coral, but I only use a small amount otherwise you can end up looking like Noddy! (Gosh I’m really giving my age away with these TV and Film references!) Colour and radiance are essential for combatting signs of dishevelment and fatigue, though it must be strategically placed, otherwise you could end up looking like a doll. Do a cheesy grin and where the cheeks are most prominent right next to the nose is where to apply the colour.
  10. You guessed it I used ‘MAC’ again. Highlighter is to Make Up is what perfume is to the perfect outfit. In the photo I used ‘Mineralize Skin finish’ in ‘Soft and Gentle’, I love this product, just a touch on the cheekbones, brow bone, inner corner of the eye and voila! A bit of shimmer really goes a long way! I also sometimes use a lightweight highlighter under my tinted moisturiser to brighten my complexion. My favourite is ‘Rimmel: Good to Glow’ in ‘Notting Hill’ which mixes nicely with foundations and tinted moisturisers to give a touch of glamour and vibrancy.
  11. In my last post you would have read how I keep my eyebrows in place. I haven’t pencilled them in today as I have recently dyed them which helps give coverage and shape. Also I sprayed some hairspray on my finger which I used to wipe over my brows to keep them under control!
  12. Eyes: I used a thin line to define the eyes from exactly above the iris to the outer corner of the eye; my favourite product at the moment is ‘Maybelline Master Ink Satin’ in ‘Charcoal’, this is the base line for the look I’m about to create.
  13. Have your eye shadow brush at the ready as this stuff sets quickly! ‘Laura Mercier: Caviar Stick’ in ‘Tuxedo’ is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. It’s creamy formula that’s easy to use, creates a natural or dramatic smoky eye and unlike a lot creamy textures it stays on for hours without creasing. For day time I line a little bit of product against the original thin liquid line, I then work quickly to smudge the line with the eyeshadow brush creating an ombre effect. Sometimes I extended the line to create a cat eye, but today I couldn’t be bothered. If you want extra smudge you can even use your finger, which is what I did here. A copper eyeshadow really compliments this look; I recommend ‘Urban Decay: Heat Palette’ eyeshadow in ‘Dirty Talk’… great for making blue eyes pop! Brown eyes I recommend a lighter champagne colour ‘L’Oréal: Infallible Eyeshadow’ in ‘Iced Latte’ gives the eyes a beautiful sparkle.20180523_222512.png
  14. Curling the eyelashes creates a wide awake appearance, as well as length and volume! Even if I don’t wear Makeup and I’m feeling good I can guarantee someone will ask if I’m feeling ok… so you can understand why I don’t go out facially naked if I’ve been feeling under the weather. I’ve learnt that if I can only handle the absolute minimum; a curl of the lash, a lick of mascara, a brush of bronzer and a dabbing of lipstick is enough to deter people away from the fact I’ve probably only had 4 hours sleep. I used to use ‘Shu Uemuras’ cult classic curlers but have been persuaded by ‘Kevyn Aucoins’ version which is very similar but slightly easier to use. I set my eyelashes with ‘Eyeko: Skinny Brush Mascara’ this is easy to use on curled lashes and prevents them from straightening out half way through. I sometimes curl my eyelashes after applying Mascara which I know this is a massive Make Up No No! But…… do as I say not as I do 🙂
  15. And for the grand finale, I introduce to you Electric Coral lips! If you’re out and about pop on some shades to become the ultimate Hollywood idol with this lip colour! I start with ‘Body Shop: Vitamin E Lip Balm’ to hydrate the lips, then after blotting with a tissue I go in for the kill. ‘NARS’ has created Velvet Matte pencils that are to die for; I’m slowly but surely buying my way through the whole series. The colour is called ‘Red Brick’ you can use it day or night. Its fun, bright and vibrant and doesn’t dry out the lips like a lot of matte products do. As soon as I put it on I feel instantly fabulous! I have a yellow undertone to my complexion so orange reds suit me better than a blue toned red; which usually compliments someone with more of a pink undertone. Darker complexions luckily tend to suit both. Imagine Joan Smalls with this lip colour! Wow!

 

 

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And there we are… my ‘Summer Time Sunrise Look’! Though I have to admit I can’t take all the credit. I was first introduced to this look by Celebrity Make Up Artist and good friend of mine Nathalie Eleni, she’s a true artist!

Check out her website.

https://www.nathalieeleni.com/

I felt it was important to include this post as I know how difficult it can be to get yourself back together after a tough time. It’s important to be kind to yourself and you may have a go back to basics for a little while but that’s ok! Take a shower, go for a walk, have a trendy coffee, do whatever it takes to look after you. It’s essential to put in to get out; think of yourself as a bank account. Anything that drains you, for example, depression, trauma, burn out, pmt or just feeling not great is like a heist, it demands everything from your account, so it’s up to you to fill that account up again, unfortunately there’s no insurance cover.

Hope you enjoyed reading my post! Let me know if you have anymore tips on pampering yourself after a wobbly period.

Warmest Regards

 

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Eyebrows 🤔

 

Eyebrows can be a girls best friend …or her worst enemy!

Looking through old photo’s of myself I can see in hindsight the torture I put my eyebrows through whilst I was going through my trial and error phase that lasted about 10 years!

I didn’t listen to my Grandmother who warned me to not over pluck my naturally thick voluptuous eyebrows, I was determined to turn them into tadpoles. It was in fashion to call those few wispy bits of hair that were remaining eyebrows.

I’m quite lucky that I’ve managed to grow my eyebrows back, albeit a few gaps here and there. Saying this I recently had a beautician wax off too much hair, as well as a bit of skin, I was not a happy customer!

These days we’re lucky in that there are so many ways we can heal the damage from years of getting over excited with the tweezers. Serums, Micro blading, tattoos and my personal favourite dye (hence the slightly odd photo above). The reason I like this method so much is because it’s not painful. I hate filling in my eyebrows and when you dye them it can slightly tint the skin so you don’t have to fill in as much, it’s cheap and gives definition. I use black which may scare people into thinking they are going to end up with eyebrows that look like stamps, but in actual fact it still looks natural just as long as you don’t leave the dye on too long. I use ‘Eyelure: Pro brow’, if you are worried about dying your eyebrows yourself, there are lots of salons who offer this service for a reasonable price. When applying, do take care though and smear some Vaseline around your eyebrows to stop it dying skin outside of the eyebrow area. Just a heads up I’m based in London where you can purchase ‘Eyelure’ from ‘Superdrug’ or ‘Boots’. I found when I went to Los Angeles, I couldn’t find an eyebrow dye home kit anywhere so there’s no choice but to go to the salon. I’ve only experienced this in LA but depending on your geographic location you may have to rely on the good old internet to purchase this item.

An incredible Make Up Artist friend of mine Anna Priadka used a NARS eyebrow pencil in ‘Suriname’ to perfect my shape. It had a smooth tip to ensure there were no sharp lines. (I’m not a fan of pencil’s but the way she did them was amazing…I have never been able to copy her standard!) It wasn’t such a harsh shape which I liked, and it was only used to trace the eyebrows not fill in the whole brow. You can see more Make Up tips on her YouTube channel:

Anna Priadka Make Up Tutorials

Obviously if your eyebrows are on the fairer or sparser side it may be an idea to use a bit more makeup to fill them in. I know some blondes/redheads find this difficult, as it seems to be easier to find the right shade for darker brows. You also have to take into consideration your skin tone too.

Watching Make Up tutorials on Instagram is my guilty pleasure. To be honest I find some of it too strong and overpowering but the majority of the time the techniques are pretty impressive. Sometimes I watch them for tips and ideas and then recreate my own natural version as I’m not really a fan of razor sharp eyebrows.

To wax or not to wax?

Apart from the ripping skin trauma I would say waxing is my favourite method for keeping my brows under control. I don’t know why anyone let me out of the house in my teenage years with eyebrows that looked like they had the life plucked out of them. And if that wasn’t bad enough I had matching racoon eye’s to finish off the ‘I’m experimenting’ look that I look back on now and cringe.

I think photographs tell a different story to what we see in the mirror, the mirror can’t always be trusted. Since Cara Delevigne burst into our lives and over took social media, it has been in fashion to have bushy eyebrows; the thicker the better. I ditched the tweezers, cancelled my eyebrow wax appointment and decided to let my eyebrows grow au natural. Just a gentle warning you will have to go through that awkward phase where they just look absolutely horrendous whilst growing out. Looking back I should have just worn a sign on my forehead that said ‘Work in Progress’. Finally the day came when I was complemented for my heavyweight brows; sure I also got into dying at this stage to encourage the illusion and distract from the gaps, but all round I was content.

But then you have to wonder if it suits your overall look. Whilst I rocked my new fully (ish) grown eyebrows for a while, I started to get aggravated about how unkempt they looked no matter what I did with them. So I was back at the Salon with my tail between my legs, I think they were actually happier that they had more to work with. I got them threaded and even though they looked great I really can’t handle the pain of threading! I figured the in between look suits me best, not too thin, not too thick. I love high fashion girls with bushy eyebrows but had to come to the realisation that I can’t really pull that look off.

I would recommend trying to see the same beautician every time, that way you are both on the same page about what you want or what you are trying to achieve. If you opt for plucking your own eyebrows, start with a little at a time, you can always take off more but you can’t put back in. There’s certain measurements you can use to help you, I recently had to give up a bit of thickness and opt for symmetry which was actually hard to do as I’m reluctant to give up thickness in case it doesn’t grow back, but I realised it was for the greater good.

I think it’s a well known Make Up tip that you can use a pencil at the side of your nose to measure the eyebrow dimensions. For example, placing the pencil diagonally from the nose up to the eyebrow to find out where the end of the hairs should finish and then straightening the pencil to see where the brows should start. One trick I use is to line the eyebrows all around with a dark liner to attain the desired shape, then pluck the hairs that are outside of this drawn on shape.

I spoke earlier about different techniques, for example micro blading, tattooing and actually just remembered HD brows! I can see myself getting addicted to HD brows, but right now I’m really into acrylic nails so it’s about balance. If I had to spend all my money on beauty treatments I want then sure I’d look good, but I would also be homeless and starving.

A friend of mine had micro blading done recently, and her eyebrows look fab! She’s blonde so it’s sometimes a little more difficult to achieve thickness and definition. There’s many pros to this treatment; it’s long lasting, achieves thickness and definition, you don’t have to use Make Up on them… and one obvious con… the pain! No pain no gain! I will probably at some point look at getting this done, but I feel my next obsessions is going to be eyelash extensions.

Eyebrows have the ability to give the impression you are more alert and awake, which we all need from time to time after a late night binge session on Netflix. They are also important when it comes to framing the face.

Hope you enjoyed this post!

Warmest Regards

 

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Congratulations Harry & Meghan! 👰

The big day has arrived and it was perfect!

The sun was shinning, the happy couple couldn’t take their eye’s off each other, Meghan’s dress was the envy of bride’s to be everywhere and most of the guests were A- list royalty (aswell as actual royalty)… all round a wonderful day that will go down in history.

But I couldn’t help being reminded there was something missing, and I’m sure this wouldn’t be too far from Harry’s mind either. His Mother, Diana Princess of Wales, who passed away late August 1997.

I intended to disclose this at a later date but I thought I might as well bite the bullet and do it now as my past experience echoes Harry and William’s so closely. I lost my Mother at 8 years old, she developed Breast Cancer and was ill for about a year and a half before she passed away at the young age of 43.

When you lose someone so close to you it seems life stops; in some ways it does. Trauma freezes you in the age the trauma happened, your mind isn’t so aware of time, so that’s why it sometimes feels like these tragedies happened yesterday instead of years or decades before. I always resonated with the poem by W H Auden, particularly the first section:

‘Stop all the clocks, cut off the telephone,
Prevent the dog from barking with a juicy bone,
Silence the pianos and with muffled drum
Bring out the coffin, let the mourners come.’

I think there’s a subconscious denial that your parents will actually die. Maybe that’s why it took so long to even consider accepting my Mother’s death as there was a refusal to believe my Mum wasn’t immortal. When your parents pass away I feel a bit of you goes with them, but then a part of them stays with you. It must have been a strange time for William and Harry as the world was grieving their Mother with them. I can’t even begin to comprehend what being in the public eye at this devastating time must have been like for them. I know they have spoken about their own personal Mental Health issues in the past, but they have turned this into a positive, by setting up a wonderful charity called ‘Heads Together’ which challenges stigma’s surrounding Mental Health, fundraises and educates. It’s truly inspiring!

As you become older happy life events are flavoured with a hint of sadness as it’s a reminder that this person isn’t around to create new memories with anymore; their story was cut short. You can’t help but think about how happy they would be that you were getting married or meeting your new baby, you end up with a feeling that I can only describe as bittersweet.

Throughout the years I’ve struggled with the fact having your Mum is around is the basically the norm and my situation isn’t. Trying not to indulge in bitterness is easier said than done as you desperately search for something or someone to blame instead of accepting that life ‘just is’. Mother’s day is non existent in my world, I run away from this day and stick my head in the sand which is probably not the best tactic. My therapist recommended visiting her grave to which I declared I’m not saying ‘Goodbye’. He assured me I don’t have to, I can say ‘Hello’ which I liked. He confided that this is what he does as he lost his Father when he was a young boy, which I was grateful for. In my opinion there’s nothing worse than a robotic therapist, I prefer the human ones!

I remember watching Diana’s funeral, it was heart breaking to say the least. Watching William and Harry mournfully follow their Mother’s coffin knowing this is not the natural order of things makes my eyes water as I write this twenty years on. I’m currently in a café with Elton John playing in the background, I’m praying ‘Candle in the Wind’ doesn’t start playing because then I’ll really lose it.

I lost my Father end of 2016. Coincidentally it was also to Cancer and again took about a year and half between diagnosis and him passing. Losing a Parent as a child vs an adult is in my experience completely different. I felt there was something particularly traumatic about losing a Mother when you’re a child; it’s taken nearly twenty years to start truly processing the grief of losing her. I would tell people about it like an over rehearsed script that I felt disconnected from and numb, whilst I watched their heart break for me. I regret to admit that I blocked her out of my life for a long time as it was too painful, it was an open wound that I hoped by just sticking a plaster on would heal on it’s own. But unfortunately the wound turned into an infection and spread into other areas of my life in the form of addiction, distorted thinking, acute self esteem issues and the list goes on. A Mother when your young is essentially your sense of self, and I was lucky enough to have had an extremely loving Mother which makes the forced separation all the more painful. I’m only starting to understand the extent of damage this can do to a child.

Diana would have been so happy and proud to see the way her boys turned out. I see their Mother in both of them, particularly through their Humanitarian work and kindness, she lives on in them, as my Mother does in me. I read an article where William mentioned that he tells his children stories about Diana, I thought this is a beautiful way to keep her legacy alive.

I’ve come to realise that this loss will never go away, I used to think going to therapy meant getting rid of the bad things that have happened, but this was not the case. Nothing will ever take the place of my Mother, but I can do things to make the pain more comfortable, for example, I’m really benefitting from support groups at the moment. Instead of a open wound that can be aggravated at any time, it becomes a scar…still a big part of my life, but no longer astronomically painful.

I’ve recently stumbled across a meet up group called ‘Motherless Daughters’ for women who have lost their Mother before the age of 21 years old. This group was inspired by the book ‘ Motherless Daughters: The Legacy of Loss’ by Hope Edelman. I’m so happy this issue has been addressed as actually there’s little support for this particular issue, I feel a lot of bereavement treatment’s are designed for more recent losses. Admittedly I am yet to attend a meeting or finish the book, I feel this is to do with my avoidance of being overwhelmed by the reality of my early loss, but I will definitely participate as sometimes the hardest road to walk down is the best one for you. I have read sections of the book and already Hope’s words really struck a chord. My 11 year old niece also tragically lost her Mother to Cancer last year after a 17 year battle, she was originally supposed to only survive three years after diagnosis but Debbie had a strong faith and I think that combined with an intense love for her daughter kept her alive for 17 more years, it was actually somewhat of a miracle. ‘Motherless Daughters’ talks about children needing to involve themselves in activities to distract themselves from the painful reality, I see this in my Niece. Unfortunately she is growing up in the age of social media where your self worth is determined by the amount of followers you have, so I fear this particular obsessive compulsive distraction is not great. I think I became submerged in play or homework when I was young and recently bereft… well maybe not so much the homework side of it. The surviving parent thinks the child is coping well, but actually it’s more of a coping mechanism that will work for a while, but without the right care and support it could fester into a wide range of Mental Health problems.

Becoming your own parent can be key to recovery, I am learning this. I felt for so long I have been without my Mothers love in my life, loving myself the way she loved me is overwhelming and feels too good to be true. I have been surviving on bread crumbs from well meaning caregivers over the years; then recovery comes along and tells me to devour a whole loaf of bread… I can’t, even though I’m starving and desperately need it. Extinguishing that harsh critic in my head with love seems like a over optimistic fantasy at the moment, but I will get there somehow day by day, all in good time. I think love is one of the most powerful tools in recovery, we’re not supposed to be on our own.

I previously mentioned support groups, this is a wonderful thing. It gives you a sense of community, a feeling of being held, support, empathy from people who have also experienced trauma and a lot more; if I had to list everything it would turn into a whole different post. This has really helped me explore my feelings of grief in a safe environment, and allowed me to cry my eyes out with a loving and warm hug at the end. Can’t even tell you how healing this is!!

I’ve started to reunite with old friends of my Mum’s as well, this helps me see what a wonderful person she was from an adults point of view. I’m interested in what she liked, what she did, what she was like etc….identifying with her as an actual person as against just my Mum. I think we would have been great friends.

I’ve recently reconnected with my faith. I was well on the way to becoming a shell of a person, I felt life was pointless and that I seemed to be a victim of circumstances and there was nothing I could do about it. My restored faith has changed that attitude, I feel more connected to my parents through prayer; I believe its only the physical self that passes not the spirit. At times I still struggle wondering why things have turned out the way they have, but I do believe we’re not given anything we can’t handle. I wasn’t dealt the best set of cards but they certainly weren’t the worse. And one day I will become a Mother and like William I will keep my Mother’s legacy alive, and let my children know who she was, and how much she would have adored them.

I fully intend to bring my Mother back into my life; her love for her daughter is so powerful that it defies death and can restore me to sanity.

Warmest Regards

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About Me 😃

Hello there,

Thank you so much for visiting my blog. I hope to explore issues and topics that you can enjoy and give you food for thought!

You may be wondering why I have linked two completely apposing interests together.  Well my answer is that I am in the midst of a career change; I have decided to go back to University to study Psychology after years of being a Creative. Lets explore this section first before we move onto the latter as I have a tendency to get over excited and bounce from topic to topic.

I have always had a genuine interest in the workings of the mind as well as debates surrounding this topic…why someone makes the choices they do? Why people feel and think the way they do? Why is acceptable to tell people you have a bad back but it’s still somewhat ‘taboo’ to mention you are suffering from a depression for example?

Therapists have been a big part of my life from around the time I ‘properly’ started seeing one in my early twenties when the ‘Sh*t hit to fan’ so to speak… and yes I would say this had a huge influence on my decision to swop the tissue box for the notepad and pen.

I come from a background of grief, trauma, dysfunction and illness… and just to make things confusing there was love, happy times and support mixed into the concoction too. ( I hear from people this is quite normal for family life, I guess it just depends on the quantity of the ingredients put into the mix). I won’t go into my past too much at this point as I want to keep it on blog territory and not memoirs, but I will be exploring in later posts.

So why Make Up? Exploring Mental Health at some points might get quite heavy, so I wanted to keep it light by throwing in some fun things too. I love make up! Having come from a modelling/acting background it was a big part of my work, so I will be sharing tricks of the trade as well as trying new techniques and recommendations. I will be collaborating with expert Makeup Artists in the industry to give you that ‘I woke up like this’ perfection. (I want the excuse to try new Make Up!)

Everything in between. This involves, fitness, Theatre/Film reviews, work etc… But as it says on the tin my main focus will be Mental Health and Make Up, at times combining the two, stay tuned to see what I’m going on about.

Hope you are as excited about this journey as much as I am!

Warmest Regards

Samantha x

 

The Journey Begins

Thanks for joining me!

My name is Samantha; a psychotherapist in the making and ex model/actress (yes I was a slasher!).  I hope to inspire, challenge and explore through my chosen topics to ensure you have food for thought and keep coming back for more!

Excited to start this Journey with you!

x

‘Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes’— Carl Jung

 

Warmest Regards

 

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