Monday, 30 December 2013

Born Pretty Store: A Pretty Nice Watch I'll Have You Know

So I haven't had a watch for like ten years.
Since I refused to take off an old Harry Potter one, (apart from to have a shower because like, it totally would naaat have withstood the water and I loved it too much to let such a tragedy occur) and subsequently ended up with a fairly severe reaction and weird dry patch of skin where it had been.

I swear Voldemort had cursed it.
It was like a horcrux or something.

I haven't worn a watch since.

Now this wasn't a problem for many years, I didn't care, and having spent the years following shoving as many gold bangles on my wrists as physically possible, my wrist never felt bare.
Until recently that is, when all these pretty gold and rose gold watches started springing up in stores, attracting my eyes like some crazed magpie, and making me crave some tick-tock-loving.

Bangles are good, but they just don't tick mann!!

I had planned to spend my imaginary money in the Christmas sales treating myself to said tick-tock-loving, but as though listening in to my thoughts, (in a non-creepy way) an email from American website 'Born Pretty Store' popped into my inbox...

After a bit of research and lots of 'oooooh's and 'aaaah's at the various wrist and bracelet watches, (oh and iPhone 4/4S cases because good god I need a new one!)  I decided that there was just one I couldn't get out of my head...
A couple of weeks later and a gorgeous little package arrived at my house, containing what must be one of the most gorgeous watches I have ever seen! 

The watch I was kindly sent is *deep breaths you guys* LEOPARD PRINT!!
Now oh my frickin' gosh, me being the leopard print fiend I am, just imagine my face upon seeing this.

It was like when Simon Cowell first put One Direction together all over again.
Only with hearts in my eyes, not dollar signs...

I know it's the wrong big cat, but I almost deemed it necessary to go to the nearest hill and introduce my new watch to the world, Simba style, screaming 'Naaaaaaants Ingonyaaaaaama Bagithi Baba' at the top of my voice, and having all of Huddersfield gaze at my shiny new wrist-wear in admiration.

I'm reliably informed that this translates as 'Here Comes a Lion, Father'.
Totes need to find out the word for 'leopard' instead, but whatev's.

The watch itself is very large, with a chunky faux leather strap, (a little stiff at first but after a couple of wears it feels much more comfortable) and a beautiful curved glass face with a leopard design. The buckle is rose gold, as is the detailing around the face, which is then ordained with sparkly rhinestones to, (if possible) make this watch even more beautiful!
Anyhoo, I cannot rave about this watch* enough; in all honesty I have to admit I wasn't expecting it to be such amazing quality, or the large size that it is, given that it retails at just $7.99 - complete with the added bonus of free shipping, and a spare battery, but it genuinely looks not only a lot more expensive, but really and truly stunning.
Talking of free shipping, I have to say I am so impressed as this watch arrived so promptly, (in under two weeks) especially with it being so close to Christmas.

Overall I have to say I am SOOOO happy with this watch, and 'Born Pretty Store' in every way, it was probably a bit too close to Christmas when I received my watch for me to say it, but if you're on a budget and still want to impress, these watches would make amazing gifts!

Now just when you thought the lovelies at 'Born Pretty Store' couldn't get any more generous, they're also kindly offering a 10% off discount code for all you little beauties, if you type in HOLLYGC10 when purchasing - yeyy!!

I'm looking forward to wearing my gorgeous leopard print beauty, and, well, embracing my inner cat, magpie, and ermm...weird monkey thing on the hill as I show it off to all of Huddersfield, 'Lion King' style.

No chance Voldemort is getting his hands on this bad-boy.
He might have a wand, but no way can he beat the claws of my big cat, whether they're encased in a glass watch face, or otherwise...

Thursday, 26 December 2013

The Christmas Day OOTD Which Almost Never Was...

I never learn you guys.
Seriously what is wrong with me?

I insist on buying and wearing stuff which shows off half my midriff and/or clings to me unnecessarily, and then go on to consume double my body weight in food, and most likely complain at being cold.

Stomach aside, I clearly have no concern for my internal organs.

Clever girl I am.

Then again it's Christmas and if I can't dress up a little bit, knowing my mum will have her camera out at every given opportunity, then when can I?

(Apologies mum, I actually don't remember you getting your camera out at all yesterday...either that or my Christmas Day camera evasion skills are finally working...
Hmm, maybe I am clever after all?)

What I wore:

Tartan Midi Skirt - Karma Clothing £7.99
Pointed Black Wedges - ASOS/eBay £10 (other seller here!)
Necklace - Miss Selfridge 

The thing is, getting my hands on this midriff and internal organ baring outfit was no mean feat. 
In fact it was one giant pain. 

How much do you hate it when you attempt to add something pretty to your basket, only for your laptop to laugh maliciously back in your face that the item you covet is 'out of stock', like some evil Grinch-like-Gremlin hell-bent on spoiling your Christmas outfit?
I know y'all hate that.

Well I'm pretty sure ASOS, Missguided, Boohoo, everywhere, was infected with a bug this month, a bug called 'human-population-all-following-same-trends', and therefore the tartan midi skirts of the online world had been somewhat decimated, rainforest style.

Mm-hmm seriously, I blame you guys.
I love you, but this is totes your fault.
It's probably you guys hiring out those diggers and destroying the Amazonian jungles of South America.
Wearing your stoopid, fancy, tartan skirts at the same time.
Even your hard hats are various shades of tartan and most probably even fur lined.
Yeah, I've seen you.

Trend deniers.
Denying me the latest trends since 2013.

I thought all hope was lost; I'd even trawled through weeks of Jess from 'Copper Garden's posts in search of a link to the tartan skirt which was my inspiration.
Sadly it seemed the steamrollers had already reached their stock...
I sighed, and resigned myself to failure.

'I shall never look as stylish as Jess, nor will I have clothes on Christmas Day.'

 I feared for my poor grandmas eyes, and hoped she had enough snowman-covered napkins to spare my dignity.

Thankfully, a Google search of desperation lead me to Karma Clothing, which I've heard of but not bought from before, and to the skirt that saved my sanity!
I wasted no time, I feared that the steamrollers were stalking me and would soon be on my back, ridding the store of it's stock before I could even select a size!

This time though, I won!
And the £7.99 bargain beauty that is this skirt, was MINEEEE :D
With next day delivery it even arrived in time for me to wear it out for curry with my bestie...
Again, cold night and food baby -I really do never learn.

Screw my cold kidneys - I'll get my wear out of it now damn it!

Apparently this is my 'rude girl' face. Imagine me staring at all you tartan skirt wearing rainforest destroyers just like this...
You should be.
On my face I wore more or less my usual make-up, but with some added Christmas present goodness in the form of MAC's 'Lady Danger', which I've wanted since more or less birth, despite it probably not existing then...
There's a blog post coming soon all about it in all it's orange/red glory.
And I am one happy girl!!

Before I go and raid the leftover turkey...
A moment if you please, for my shoes.
They were an eBay (originally ASOS) bargain, and I snapped them up, brand new and boxed, for £10 including postage.
Even your tartan hard hats couldn't take a stamping on from these bad boys ;)
Then I'd collect all your amazing skirts and like, just wear them all.
At once.

Least there may be some chance of disguising my food baby then, and I might even be snuggly and warm enough under all those layers to have the inevitable Christmas Day food induced nap.

I might even dream of tartan.
Or maybe I already did...and it finally came true.

Merry Christmas everyone, hope you all had amazing days, wearing whatever goodness you liked, and that no malicious laughter had affected your outfit shopping, whether it be a onesie or a tartan skirt like mine :)


Saturday, 21 December 2013

'MoroccanOil' Review

Hallelujah peeps.
I'm not dead.

I mean, I could pretend I was, and that this here blog post was coming to you from beyond the grave...

Which would be totally cool 'cos like I'd be a ghost with the ability to touch actual objects such as my laptop and not have my hand go straight through the keys.

...yes, however cool it would be, (aside from the being dead part) sadly, I have no excuses.
I've simply been absent without leave.
A blogging rebel who has just been, well, busy.

Don't worry it's not just you, my Christmas dec's aren't even fully up, and don't even get me started on the disaster that is my Christmas cards.
Y'all will have them while the year ends in '13', promise*.

A possibly better fib would have been to tell you that this blog post was coming to you from the golden desert sands of Morocco.
Now given that the amount of Moroccan Spiced houmous consumed in the last few weeks is now bordering the ridiculous, (but ohhh so sublime), and also given what I'm reviewing for your pretty little selves today, this could have been somewhat more believable.

I'm like, typing this on my camel as we speak.
His name is Dave.

And his fur is almost as glossy as my hair these days.
Almost, but not quite.

Now all laptop-balanced-on-camel-hump issues aside, it's my hair that really drives me nuts.
Sadly it seems I'm no Nicole Scherzinger, but man I try.
 Luckily for me, the people behind had heard my plight and kindly sent me some 'MoroccanOil'*, so I could continue my Sherzy Hair Quest...

I've heard a ton about 'MoroccanOil' in the past and with most of it being 100% positive, boy was I excited to get my hands (or hair strands?) on it!
I use 'Argania Hair Oil' normally after washing my hair, but with quite a considerable price difference for the full sized products, ('MoroccanOil' being literally double the price) I was interested to see how the two compared; given that I love my Argan Oil, my new little blue labelled Moroccan friend had a challenge ahead!

'MoroccanOil' can be used as a conditioning product as well as a styling tool, and claims to transform and repair hair using proteins, vitamins, and antioxidants which help for shine, protection, and even drying time. 
Wild claims I know, and normally I'm quite the sceptic; I need to be able to see a visible difference in order to believe something, but in this case I am mightily impressed.

To use, I pour a teeny tiny amount of 'MoroccanOil', (I'd say pea sized, because a little goes a long way, but I probably use a double-pea sized amount, 'cos I've got a fair bit of hair, innit?) into the palm of my hand and rub together before running my palms and fingers through my hair, concentrating on the lengths - ain't nobody got time for silky roots maynnnn we need 'em BIG - I like to do this when my hair is damp, but it can be used when dry.

Now I'm not gonna lie to you - the results are instantaneous! 
My hair can look a bit on the frizzy side - especially after washing, and this just smooths everything all out, adding shine literally as soon as it's applied! 
My hair is manageable and my brush glides through it more easily, my ends are tamed and although I doubt they really have been 'repaired', I can't see any visible split ends - YEAHHHHH MAN!! 

Now I love my hair to have volume and I'll be honest, it's not gonna make your hair look huge or Cheryl Cole-esque. I imagine if you went overboard and applied too much it would be very flat indeed, and probably a bit on the greasy side, so err...just don't.
Scherzinger shine though?
God damn it I'm finally on my way to achieving hair sanctuary!
My hair isn't weighed down, and the smell is pleasant, and doesn't linger in the hair; I can still smell the strawberries of my shampoo, mmm.
As mad as it sounds I genuinely believe the claim that drying time improves too; I normally leave my hair to dry naturally and the time taken to dry from being damp and applying this, to being fully dry is definitely improved!

(without flash) Before, After

 (with flash) Before, After

Overall I am mightily impressed - my hair looks and feels better than it has done since, well, birth, and I absolutely love my little blue labelled wonder bottle!

As far as the comparison between my 'Argania Hair Oil' and 'MoroccanOil' goes, they're reasonably similar - I'd say the Argania version could qualify as a decent dupe, but just lacks that extra bit of 'something' that justifies the doubled price tag.
Doesn't smell quite as lovely either...
I'm hoping that because such a little goes a long way, my bottle will last me long enough to save up some pennies for another bottle - and I'm a cheapo bargain hunter so y'all know this stuff is good!!


Right, it's time for me to get going, ironically I need a shower and to wash my hair - meaning it's 'MoroccanOil' time again oh yeahh.

Thankfully the only graveyard action really in this post comes from my hair being in Hair Heaven, (du-dum-dum-chhhh) and feeling more than a bit lovely.
It's been a long road to recovery for this mop on my head, but I genuinely believe I'm almost there, with 'MoroccanOil' as my new guardian angel :)

You can buy your own little blue labelled beauty in the form of 'Moroccan Oil' here from Amazing Hair, and have your own bottle of guardian angel goodness.
I'm sharing the loveage ;)

It's almost as good as I imagine a holiday to Morocco would be right now.
Could use a bit of heat, me.
Sat on a sun lounger (or a camel, whatev's) with a pot of Moroccan Spiced houmous and pitta bread, (or to be honest just a spoon will do) with my silky new locks flowing lavishly around my shoulders in something of a L'Oreal moment...


I can almost smell the tagine.

*Mum, I'm lying, they're all done I swear.
(Apart from that you know I've left them at your house.
Love you.

Thursday, 5 December 2013

The #BBLOGGER Tag :) aka SHAME.

This should actually be known as the 'SHAME' tag.
Because all I fear I'm about to do is shame myself fully, and look like an even worse beauty blogger than I did the other week...
I should be stripped of such a title and thrown to the lions.
(Or leopards, they're prettier)

If I hadn't already used it, I'd believe now to be an appropriate place to link the Princess Superstar 'Bad Babysitter' video.

Instead however, given that I'm about to reveal details covered in filth, shame, and most likely more black mould than my Dettol BFF spray can handle, I'll link you this one:

Because she's 'a scumbag don't you know'...

Welcome to...

Before I begin creating you an image of myself you'd rather not know about, I'd like to thank Kate from 'Pretty Little Us', for doing this tag and thus making me giggle more than I have in a while.
She's a doll she is.
A good and gorgeous Geordie doll.

1. Name a beauty routine you barely do:
Tempted to ask where to start here...
I believe I should exfoliate more; particularly in the Summer months when I become vain and shallow to the extent that I seem to think that tan prolongage is more important than removing dead skin cells.
Totes is.
I believe I should also probably paint my nails more, I've had nails of the nekkid variety for at least a month now, and I'd be kidding myself if I told you it was to give my nails a break in the hope that they will grow...
I mean it would be an awesome bonus if they did actually grow.
But they haven't.
Not even a bit.
In reality I just can't be bothered to do them knowing that they will be chipped after a single days wear.

2. Is washing your make-up brushes something you do regularly?
See here's the thing, I use one single eyeshadow brush, one single bronzer brush, (defo not even a bronzer brush, it's shape and use is unknown, and in fact it's good for nothing) and a skinnier brush I use to apply my highlight, purely because my highlight is the only product it picks up.
They get washed about once every six weeks, if that...and err all three are on their last legs.
One more wash and there won't be enough fluff left on them to warrant usage.
In desperation I may turn to my toothbrush or something, I mean it's about the right size for my eyes at least?
And definitely cleaner.

3. How long will you last with chipped nail varnish?
An hour.
Maybe less.
And sadly it doesn't come off via the safe and healthy 'nail-polish-remover-and-cotton-wool-pad' method...
More likely the 'pick-it-off-along-with-at-least-one-layer-of-your-nail-for-good-luck' method.
You know the one.

4. How long do you put off buying/replacing a beauty or nail polish product even if you need it?
(i.e topcoat, foundation and so on)
Allow me to direct you to my Instagram. I've been documenting the demise of my products on a regular basis...

I'm currently in need of a replacement bronzer, highlight, powder, brown and black eyeliner, top coat, nail polish remover, eye gel, toner, and leave in conditioner.
They all lived full and happy lives, but are soon to earn their wings and start their new life in the bin.

5. What is your worst beauty habit?
You want more?
Haven't I shamed myself enough?
Okay, so aside from the lack of nail painting, dead skin congregating, non-brush washing and general bad beauty bloggingness, you want more?

Aw mannn.
Okay so it's not that I nicked this one off Kate, but I am purely the same in that I can not leave well alone!
My skin is luckily relatively clear and constant, but you can mark my words that not only do I have to pick and squeeze every teeny tiny blemish until it becomes huge and unsightly, but I also pick and squeeze my clear skin and create marks when they're not there!
Needless to say I then regret it and have to re-do my skin routine in a bid to repair the damage.
It works, sometimes.

6. Name something non-beauty related that you put off doing all the time.
Well as of this morning I've become aware that a very nasty and sneaky black mould problem has returned and is lurking nastily upstairs, behind and most probably on my wardrobe...
Of course I SHOULD be spending yet another evening emptying, moving, and de-moulding said wardrobe, along with the walls and windows - then having all the windows open in order to avoid inhaling 'Dettol Mould and Mildew Remover', therefore hallucinating that the mould was growing on my head instead of hair.

Nahh...blogging is much more fun.

7. When going out somewhere, do you leave getting ready until the last minute or not?
No, I am awesome.
I take ages, but I'm awesome...

...and still always late

8. Can you commit to spending bans?
Again, I am awesome.

9. How organised are your make-up and nail polish collections? make-up is all in one bag contained on a shelf which also houses my MAC and Naked palettes, and my nail polish is all in one collections are large but not extensive enough to group or order in any way, so that's enough for me. :)

10. What's the longest time you've gone without writing a blog post?
Ufffff well, about nine days.
Maybe ten.
And that was only a couple of weeks not too bad if I'm honest considering I generally only do one post a week.

See this here, this is spoiling you this is.
Two posts in under a week.

Don't say I don't treat you ;)


Now then, in other things I am avoiding at the minute, one is my Jillian Michaels DVD. Once again I can hear her bellowing my name and threatening to remove the houmous from my fridge if I don't leg it up them stairs soon...
I cannot risk this you guys.
My houmous is my world and my everything.
It's also tomorrows dinner, and if it goes then my belly will make noises I'm really not so keen on.
I swear one day you'll pop onto my little blog right here and see the name is now 'Houmous Mixtures' or something equally questionable.

I'm off, in fear of Jillian, and to save my beloved houmous.
See she too changes when the sun goes down.

I can see it in her eyes yeah that she's got a nasty plan,
And I really don't want* to be involved at all...

*my houmous

Sunday, 1 December 2013

MAC Eyeshadow Additions: Naked Lunch and Charcoal Brown

Okay let me just state how immensely happy I am not to have had to take the photo's for this post today.
It would just fail, and like, huuugely!

I have...
*deep breaths everyone*
You know the one.

Like seriously, why?
The outer corner of my left eye has poured since the second I woke up, and in fact, last night a bit too...
...and on and off for a week or so.
These are tough times people.
Tough times.

I'd have sympathy with it, but no, I believe it is having some sort of strop resulting from being awake for too many hours.
As if the rest of my body isn't tired too!

The diva that is my left eye, is now so sore and red from having had make-up forcibly applied to it, (which of course it rejected, ungratefully) and being blotted, rubbed and wiped, that I now feel I'd be in less pain with no left eye at all.
At least my make-up would look even then.

I mean I have very little of my favourite brown eyeliner left and think it's quite disgusting that my eye thinks it's acceptable to just reject what remains and pour it down my cheek.
I do not appreciate this.

My eye doesn't even seem to appreciate the fact that I'm applying extremely beautiful and shiny new shadow to it, it is clearly really the eye of a man and should be stopped or swapped ASAP.

Anyhoo, despite eye dramas and diva eyes, I have a very exciting review today yey!!
As you may know, around the time of my birthday back in August I started the path to something of a dream come true...
I started 
*more deep breaths*
Now, me, my six shades and I were living happy and harmoniously for a wee while, but then the itch struck and a shopping trip to a place housing a Debenhams ensued...
aka not Huddersfield,
That only meant one thing, and on that beautiful day out with a handsome man, two new baby presents came home with me to be with their friends in my palette, and on my eyes.
Faleminderit shume <3

I had decided on two cult favourites; 'Naked Lunch' and 'Charcoal Brown' because, well, I needed to join that cult...

Now, as with my last MAC related blog post, watch me impress you now with my lack of rambling, as I present to you ACTUAL INFORMATION!

Naked Lunch:
Joining 'All That Glitters' as an everyday all-over-lid colour, 'Naked Lunch' is a pretty, pearly, pale pink frost finished piece of goodness. Being a frost finish, it's less 'in your face' than 'All That Glitters' despite similar pinky tones, but I love it just as much! It's beautifully creamy and applies like a dream, even with my scratty excuse for a brush...I haven't tried it but I imagine it would look great as a subtle brow bone highlight...just a little will do as it's extremely pigmented, but oooh so puurrty!!

Charcoal Brown:
Ahhh, well what to say about 'Charcoal Brown'? 
It's offering me a slightly less warm toned and just slightly lighter alternative to my beloved 'Brown Down', and a potential brow colour for the fateful day, (hopefully not for a couple of years lol) when my HD Brow Kit runs out, along with being more or less just the perfect matte brown shade for everyday wear!
You know I love a good dark brown cut crease...and this ladies and gents, is the one!
It applies beautifully once again and is buildable, blendable, and well, just beautiful ahh...
As beautiful as a brown can be anyway.

L-R 'Naked Lunch', 'Charcoal Brown'

Did you like my lack of rambling?
Weird wasn't it?
I think so.
I'm proud though, there was a time ladies, (and you cheeky gents you) when I had to write seriously, or be laughed out of A Level English...
I've still got it ;)

For now though, I have to go.
Jillian Michaels is waiting to shout at me from the comforts of her DVD box, and I have to clean the bathroom before I can even attempt to shut her up.
I also have make-up to remove, which MY GOD HAS STOPPED RUNNING!!
Maybe my eye water is running from Jillian?

What even is this foolishness dear eye of mine?
You run all day like a mofo and when I no longer need to look decent you stop?

Where's that naughty step?
Watch me vac you up.

5.45am will come tomorrow and there it will go again, waterfalling on me like it's normal.

Suggestions in the comments please on how to seek revenge on my eye, and/or solutions to WOCOE Syndrome.
They are more than welcome.

On failing that I'm tempted to introduce my eye to the piece of cutlery more commonly known as 'fork' and see how it tantrums then...
Heed my warning, lefty.
I don't mess around, me.