Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Zara Sale Bargains // AW13 Prep

On a recent trip to the Metro Centre, I decided to have a rifle through the Zara sale. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much as the sale launched a fair few weeks ago and I thought that I'd only find the unwanted left-behind clothes as is usually the case with big highstreet sales. Luckily I couldn't have been more wrong!
About 3/4 of the store was made up of rails of sale clothes, with only a small section dedicated to their new collection, which made for a very happy Holly. 
It really must have looked like a scene from Confessions of a Shopaholic as I stumbled towards the fitting rooms with handfuls of hangers as well as various garments slung over my shoulders...

I left the shop with four fantastic bargains - it would have been more if payday hadn't been so bloody far away! - and all four will be perfect for the fast-approaching Autumn/Winter (sorry, I know we're still basking in an uncharacteristically hot Summer here in England, but I do love A/W fashion!). In honour of these beautiful clothes, I decided to try something different with my outfit photos involving a DIY camera stand made of boxes, books and DVDs, and the beginning of a fling with my camera's self-timer.. I know the background isn't exactly professional (hello Ian Somerhalder calendar making an appearance in the corner) but I'm hoping you'll overlook that as it is my first attempt at this style of outfit post :)

Jumper: £7.99 from £19.99

I love this chunky cable knit jumper, I can't believe it cost me less than £8! It is such amazing quality, it's quite heavy which makes it feel even more luxurious and expensive. I think this will be the perfect cosy jumper for Winter and will look great with leggings, jeans or even denim shorts and boots in Autumn/Spring when the weather is at that in-between stage.

Jumper: £9.99 from £35.99

This black jumper with 3/4 length sleeves is such a stand-out piece for AW13 as the colourful floral cross stitch pattern is so eyecatching. I think this will look great worn on top of a shirt or blouse with the collar popping out or paired with a gold statement necklace. I'm sure I'll get a lot of wear out of this at university when the cold, wet weather inevitably returns to Newcastle. It'll be nice to wear something bright, cheerful and festive to improve my mood!

Jumper: £7.99 from £25.99
(Disco Pants: River Island  //  Boots: New Look)

For the past few Winters, I have been in search of the perfect slouchy oversized jumper. I am a massive fan of the slouchy casual look, I just think it looks undone and carefree yet stylish and feminine - a perfect combination. I spotted this mononchrome stiped jumper in a size L and thought it might be exactly what I was looking for - and it really is! I love this jumper off the shoulder with the baggy sleeves rolled up for an almost jumper-dress look. I would pair this with leggings or disco pants and boots as above for a casual daytime outfit.

Trousers: £12.99 from £39.99

These trousers are not something I would usually go for, but I'm so glad I tried them on as I am totally in love with them now. They are camel coloured with black stripe detailing down the sides and an ankle cuff with gold stud fastening gives them a more dressy feel, though these could be styled for day or night. I love these paired with my black and gold ankle strap sandals from New Look and a black cami top. These trousers are the perfect style update for my wardrobe and I know I'll have fun styling them in different ways.

So, not only have I picked up some great bargains to carry me through to next season, but I've learned my lesson - don't write off sales after the first few weeks as there are still some beautiful pieces hiding away, you just have to brave the messy rails and tables piled high with jumpers to find them, but it's 100% worth it when you walk out with reasonably priced, on-trend items that you're really happy with!

What do you think of these Zara sale picks? 
Should I continue to take my outfit photos this way?

Holly xo

Sunday, July 28, 2013

A little bit grunge

For my shift at work the other night, I decided I was feeling a bit.. rocknroll? So I threw on my new Rolling Stones tee, some denim shorts with a chunky black belt and my favourite grungey leather boots. I decided to go all out on the beauty front too with a dark grey smokey eye, textured hair and a pink lip to finish the look. Everything you see in this outfit post is from New Look, as that's where I work and there's a fairly strict uniform policy - all New Look all the time ha.

For the makeup look I used the Bourjois Healthy Mix Foundation, Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer and Rimmel Stay Matte Powder for the base. On my eyes I blended together Tease and Pistol from the Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette and Chateau from my Bare Minerals Ready Eyeshadow 8.0 Palette for a charcoal grey smokey eye. I then lined the eyes with the Pixi Endless Silky Eye Pen and used Blackout from the Naked 2 Palette to deepen the colour on the lashline and create the flick. I used Mac Bare Study Paint Pot as an inner corner highlight. My eyebrows were filled in slightly with the Rimmel Professional Eyebrow Pencil in 004 Black Brown. I finished with a few coats of the Bourjois Volume Clubbing Mascara and a slick of Mac Creme Cup on the lips.
To create texture in my hair, I used two products from the L'Oreal Studio Matte and Messy range - the Shine-Free Fibre Paste and the Shine-Free Salt Spray before blowdrying.

Here's the finished look: 

What do you think of this slightly grungier look?
What are your must-have pieces or products for a rocknroll look?

Holly xo

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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Cream Eyeshadow Trio

Powder eyeshadows have taken a backseat in my makeup routine at the minute and have been replaced with their creamier counterparts. Soft, smooth and easy to blend, cream shadows can be used alone for a no-fuss slick of colour, as a base for powder shadows to increase pigmentation and staying power or they can be used together to create a simple cream smokey eye. The latter is the method I chose for this makeup look.
I used my current favourite of the three - Maybelline Colour Tattoo in On & On Bronze all over the lid with my Mac 217, bringing it past the outer corner of the eye slightly, and then gently patted Maybelline Colour Tattoo in Permanent Taupe onto the outer third of the eye, blending it into the crease slightly too using my Mac 226SE which was part of the Special Edition Christmas Brush set last year and is a slightly chunkier blending brush than the 217. The Colour Tattoos are amazing highstreet cream shadows - they're soft and blendable with great colour payoff and a great selection of shades to choose from, though Permanent Taupe has a slightly stiffer texture to On & On Bronze which has the perfect thick creamy texture in my opinion. I then took the more expensive option - Mac Paint Pot in Bare Study and patted it into the inner corner of the eye as a highlight and under the lower lashline using a Models Own Blending Brush. I finished with a few coats of the L'Oreal Telescopic mascara.

Apologies for the poor image quality, iPhones are not the best for taking blog photos!

How do you feel about cream eyeshadows?

Holly xo

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Let's fly away, drive away, take a holiday

Hiya girls, sorry I've been a bit AWOL recently. I think I've been suffering from a little bit of blogger's block! But I am back with a vengeance (and a long list of posts I am dying to get written for you lovely lot).
So to kick off the blog revival, here's an outfit post - I know it's been a while, my blog has been very beauty-focused recently, but my love of fashion has well and truly returned this month thanks to browsing a lot of fashion mags and blogs, as well as the highstreet churning out some seriously stylish pieces (I can feel a haul post brewing..)
One such amazing Summer piece has to be the now iconic Zara mini skorts - the skirt-shorts combo that has catapulted Zara to the top of the style charts recently. They look incredible dressed up or down, I was so smitted I accidentally bought it in two colours. Oops.
The orange pair are the focus of this outfit which I wore whilst on a mini-holiday in Spain last week with my dad and sister.

Mini Skort: Zara // Cami Top: New Look // Sandals: Primark (old) // Clutch Bag: New Look
Toe Nails: Collection Fruit Salad with Barry M Papaya and Matt White

These lightweight sheer cami tops are everywhere right now and I thought this white one from New Look would be pretty as well as practical (got to keep cool when it's pushing 36°c), though I couldn't decide whether I wanted it tucked in or left out as you can see ha. These floral Primark sandals were totally neglected when I first bought them and I have no idea why as they're so feminine and summery, this Summer they've rarely been off my feet. I'm really loving this tribal clutch bag at the minute too as it's totally unstructured and fairly big so I can fit all my night out essentials in it without struggling to close it. Score!
I used my Amazon dotting tools to do the simple flower design on my toenails.

What are your thoughts on the Zara mini skorts? 
Fashion fad or a style with staying power? 
Holly xo

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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Fashion Taboos You SHOULD Break // Guest Post

I was recently contacted by Sarah Atkinson from London Boutiques who offer a wide range of womenswear brands online such as Victoria Beckham, Acne and Vivienne Westwood. She was interested in writing a guest post for you lovely ladies about Fashion Taboos You Should Break, and I thought that sounded like a great article! So here it is, enjoy!
Love Holly xo

There are some fashion rules and taboos we are told never to break, but bending the rules or breaking them completely is sometimes a requirement. Why should we stick to the old ways? Now, almost anything goes. Here are some fashion rules you absolutely should break (some more carefully than others!)

Bags and Shoes Must Match
This rule was a must in the 60’s and was a look rocked by Jackie Kennedy. While co-ordinating bags and shoes (and your belt if you are wearing one) does look amazing for many outfits, you can also look just as fabulous with a statement handbag and different footwear. Mixing up your accessories can make your outfit much more interesting and eye-catching.

Black and Navy or Brown should Never Be Together
OK, you wouldn’t go out in black suit pants and a navy jacket, but it is not difficult to co-ordinate black with navy or brown in your outfit. Its all about using accessories to tie it together. A black jacket over a brown blouse tied together with some jewellery, a scarf, a belt or a bag with the two colours in it looks absolutely amazing when worn correctly. If in doubt, see how the celebrities do it. Have an even balance of the two colours. If you wear a navy dress, match it with navy shoes, but go for black tights and black accessories such as a belt or beads.

No White in Winter
For years, when the cold weather comes around, white clothing has been relegated to the attic until summer comes back. But why? White goes with almost everything in your wardrobe and can often give the illusion that we have a healthy glow. Don’t whip out your white summer dresses though, you’ll be very cold! Choose items that are a bit more relevant to the season, such as a chunky knit, a cosy coat with faux fur trim… You get the idea!

Maxi Dresses Are Only For Summer
It all depends what you put with it. Who says we can’t have the flattering shape or the delicious floral prints injected into our winter wear? Swap sandals for boots and shrugs for a leather jacket or blazer and you have a brand new look suitable for the cold season. London Boutiques have a delicious range of dresses which would look amazing for summer and could be dressed for winter too.

Don’t be afraid of experimenting with the unwritten rules of fashion. If designers didn’t break the rules from time to time, clothes wouldn’t be half as fun!

Which fashion rules have you broken and how did you pull it off?

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Inglot Freedom System: My Personalised Palette

As I'm from up North, and the only two Inglot stores in the country are in London (Grafton and Westfield you lucky buggers!), I'd never managed to get my hands on one of their famous freedom system palettes. That is until my recent trip to Gran Canaria, when my boyfriend and I were walking through the local shopping centre and he pointed to a little makeup shop and said 'Don't you want to look in there?' (he knows me too well) and to my delight I realised it was an Inglot store! I squealed a little bit and immediately went in to start swatching it up. Unfortunately this was the last day of the holiday and I had exactly 0 euros left to spend, but my lovely fella offered to treat me to a palette of my choice!

The freedom systems are essentially build-your-own magnetic palettes which come in various sizes and shapes to accommodate eye shadows, blushes, powders and lip colours. Once you've picked the palette you want to fill - like the 5 pan eyeshadow palette that I chose - you pick up a magnetic board and set about picking up whichever pans you want to add to your palette. I had great fun swatching the colours and snapping them onto my board. When I was done, the sales assistant found the colours I had chosen and popped the brand new pans into my chosen palette.

The Inglot eyeshadows come in 5 different finishes - Matte, Pearl, Double Sparkle (DS), AMC and AMC Shine. In my palette I have three of these finishes, and they are all so incredibly pigmented, I think they may be the best performing eyeshadows I've ever owned. The shadows are all buttery soft with immense colour payoff and for only £4.50 per individual pan, I think they are amazing value for money. Also, the bigger the palette you buy, the better value you get for the individual eyeshadow pans. 

The packaging is sturdy and sleek with a powerful magnetic lid fastening that ensures you won't have to worry about making a mess in your makeup bag but can also be opened easily simply by twisting or sliding the lid. The palettes are also very slim so will be ideal for travelling or carrying around on a day-to-day basis.  One tip though - write down the names of the shades you've chosen BEFORE they are inserted into the palette as it is bloody hard work trying to pry them out afterwards! I have seriously dented my eyeshadows with my nails, tweezers, a pen lid and eventually a broken hair clip (the winning tool) as I tried to remove them so I could write this post, I hope you appreciate it haha ;)

Now onto the colours that I chose for my palette!

As you can see, I'm definitely a lover of nude and bronze coloured eyeshadows. Not only are they so wearable and can create looks for day and night, but they are also supposed to be the most flattering shades to compliment blue eyes (like mine) as they are at the opposite side of the colour wheel. 
397 is a Pearl finish so it is slightly more subtle than the other shades in terms of sparkle and pigmentation. It is a beautiful pinky champagne colour which looks stunning all over the lid or as a highlight on the inner corners or under the browbone. I also think this would work well to highlight other areas of the face such as the cheekbones and cupid's bow. 
12 is a copper shade with a hint of pink and as an AMC Shine finish, it packs a serious punch in terms of colour payoff and shimmer. I love shimmer eyeshadows, especially for a night out so I know this will get a lot of wear out of this. 37 is also a Shine finish in a purple brown shade with plenty of shimmer. This works really well through the crease and in the outer corner of the eye, with 12 as an all-over base colour due to their similar pink/purple tones.
457 is the only Double Sparkle (DS) shade in my palette which supposedly means that it contains a lot more glitter for a very sparlky finish, but I must admit there isn't a huge difference between this and the AMC shine shades in the palette, other than that 457 does have more finely milled glitter particles in it. This shade is a cool-toned taupe/brown.
Finally, the first pan that I picked up and snapped onto my magnetic board was 21, which is a stunning golden bronze AMC Shine number. This mixes so well with all of the other colours in the palette as well as a lot of other neutral eyeshadows I own and is the perfect day-to-night shade. 

Overall, I absolutely love my Inglot palette and would definitely recommend getting your hands on one if there is a store where you live, or if you're brave enough to put together a palette online without swatching, buy at www.inglotuk.com.

Are there any other Inglot products you would recommend? What shades are in your Inglot palette?

Holly xo

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Hey everyone, I've got something a little bit different for you today. I was recently introduced to a website called 'STYLIGHT' which is an online community for fashion lovers like you and me so I wanted to share my experience.
Firstly, creating an account with STYLIGHT could not be simpler - you can sign up using your facebook account or email address, then choose a username and you are ready to go from there! No need to provide your address, phone number, great auntie's dog's name etc etc like some websites ask for, my account was created in seconds and I was ready to explore the website - and it's completely free to sign up.

You can immediately start browsing and 'hearting' products from some incredibly stylish brands, both mens and womens, highstreet and high end, where they will be saved to your profile for you and other members to view. You can also create your own 'looks' which are essentially style collages where you can pin products, your own images from your computer or instagram, music, quotes and videos to create a totally unique and personal 'look' to share with the STYLIGHT community. If your look receives enough hearts from other members, you may even find yourself trending on the front page of the site! It's also fun to browse other members' looks for fashion inspiration. 

A few of the currently trending looks on STYLIGHT ^

Here is the latest look I posted which I named 'Lust List' which includes a collection of products that I found on STYLIGHT that I am now desperately lusting after as well as one of my favourite songs right now (Blurred Lines - Robin Thicke). 
Thanks to this website I now have a slight obsession with Marc Jacobs sunglasses and AX Paris shoes..

One of the best and most unique things about STYLIGHT is that when browsing their selection of products, not only can you 'heart' them and add them to 'looks' - you can also buy them right there and then!  STYLIGHT is linked to the online stores that their products are from so you can purchase clothes, shoes and accessories from various stores with one click of your mouse! 

STYLIGHT also really values bloggers as part of their community and offer us amazing opportunities - just check out the 'Bloggers' section of their 'About Me'.  

To join the growing community and interact with fashion lovers from all over the world, just go to 
www.stylight.co.uk and sign up for free! Don't forget to check out my profile while you're there - hollslucy

Holly xo

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Tuesday, July 2, 2013

June Favourites

Another month gone already, it's actually going to be Christmas again before we know it! This month there have been some skincare, makeup and fragrance bits that I've really been loving:

Caudalie Beauty Elixir
I received this blogger's favourite in my Selfridges Summer Beauty Box last month and I can definitely see why it's on its way to cult status. I like using this as a spray-on toner after cleansing and before moisturising or during the day to freshen and add a dewy touch to my makeup. It was a total lifesaver on holiday as it's so cooling and refreshing. This peppermint-scented mist applies evenly and leaves skin feeling bright and revived and is a great pick-me-up if you're feeling unwell or hungover ha. I will definitely re-purchase this.

This hydrating serum from Indeed Labs was a Caroline Hirons-enabled purchase. The skincare guru is a massive fan of Hydraluron and since dehydrated skin is the most common skintype, I was dying to try it. So when payday rolled around I popped to Boots and picked this up without a second thought. At £25 for 30ml of product, it doesn't come cheap but it's definitely worth it. Hydraluron contains hyaluronic acid which can hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, meaning that when applied before your moisturiser, this serum helps the skin to retain moisture and over time increases the skin's elasticity and smoothness.

Mac Soft & Gentle MSF
All my makeup favourites this month are from Mac, which is unusual for me as I don't actually own a great deal of Mac products. This Mineralize Skinfinish is described by Mac as a 'gilded peach bronze' which makes it sound like a bronzer, but it's actually a stunning highlighter. I love to use this on my cheekbones, under the browbone and on my cupid's bow to add a slight golden glow. This is the perfect highlighting powder for Summer in my opinion. I know some people aren't a fan of this powder as it has a fair bit of glitter in it, so it's not the most subtle of highlighters but I personally love it. I don't find it over the top at all, it just leaves skin looking radiant and glowing.

Mac Paint Pot in Bare Study
I've really been loving cream eyeshadows this month and my most-used has been Bare Study, a beautiful creamy champagne shade which can be used as an all-over wash of colour, as a brow and inner corner highlight, as a base for powder eyeshadows, or my personal favourite - as a creamy smoky eye combined with the Maybelline Colour Tattoo in On & On Bronze. The texture is soft and buttery, making it seriously easy to blend, but you need to work quickly with these paint pots as they dry very fast and won't budge once they've dried, which is great when you're wearing them all day or night.

Mac Lipstick in Vegas Volt
I've mentioned this lipstick in a few posts recently, and my love for it is still going strong. The amplified crème formula means it's seriously pigmented whilst still being creamy and moisturising, which is the perfect combination for any lipstick if you ask me. The colour is an amped up coral which looks stunning with any skintone or hair colour and adds a gorgeous pop of colour to any makeup look.

Estee Lauder Bronze Goddess Skinscent
Another product that I've raved about previously, even dedicating an entire post to it in May when I first bought it. Estee Lauder's limited edition Summer fragrance is like a holiday in a bottle - with strong coconut and citrus notes, this scent can seriously transport you back to Summer holidays past. It isn't particularly long-lasting as it's only a skinscent rather than an eau de parfum, but I've been spraying this very liberally since I bought it and I've barely made a dint in the 100ml bottle so I know it will last me until Summer 2014. An instantly recognisable scent and a firm favourite for me.

I hope you've all had a fantastic June and are enjoying your Summer so far, especially to all my fellow students who definitely deserve a break after that stressful exam period!

Holly xo
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