Ciate Nails - Cupcake Queen

My lovely boyfriend J bought my this long sort after shade, 'Cupcake queen' as part of my Christmas gifts from him and I absolutely love it! This picture doesn't really do the colour much justice to be honest as it's a very bright pink, but not so bright that it's tacky and too in your face. Ciate describes it as, 'Hot pink with a funky irredescent hue that gives a slight shimmer.'

Ciate Paint Pots have fast become one of my go to brands for more high end nail products, as their polishes cost £9 each in comparison to Barry M's polishes which are between £2.99-£3.99 each. I love the long handle on the Ciate Paint Pots, and of course the little bow detail that's included on each bottle. J also bought me the Ciate white chocolate nail polish remover and that even has the little bow on it too!

If you want to try out Ciate's products go here and if you fancy your own bottle of Cupcake Queen go here.


Barry M Croc Nail Effects

Barry M is a brand known for its exciting, affordable and good quality nail polishes. I have never owned a colour from Barry M that I didn't like, and at £2.99-£3.99 a pop if you found a shade that you didn't suit you couldn't get angry at the seemingly throw away price. In the past it seems to have become my sole mission to obtain each and every Barry M colour and effect nail polish and when they brought out the mock croc nail effects polish as a development from the crackle effects and the foils effects range I just knew I had to have a go (bought on ASOS here).

Different Nail Stages.
So I decided to pair my croc effect with Barry M's Fuchsia nail polish (available here - scroll down the page a bit), which was not the obvious choice, clearly I should have gone for a green for a proper crocodile effect but alas I don't actually own a green polish, need to sort that out tout suite!

I did decide to follow the instructions on the bottle religiously and have to admit it was a bit tricky at first (that the nail you see on the far left in the picture here had to be wiped off and reapplied!). It says to apply your base colour and wait until it becomes 'tacky'. Now what a tacky nail looks like is beyond me so I gently touched the tip of the nail to see if the colour would come off on my finger. If it did it needed longer drying time, if it didn't and left a tiny fingerprint indent I decided it was time for croc application. (I didn't really mind about the fingerprint indent, after all you're covering it with the croc effect and won't be able to see it!)

Drying Time
Here's where it got more tricky (moreso than wondering if my Fuchsia brights were tacky enough in a good way!). Once the base colour is suitably applied then it's time to apply the nail effect layer. Like its predecessors, the crackle effects, the croc effect is painted right on top of the base layer which can seem a little scary when you're putting a big black blob on top of a gorgeous colour but fear not! This picture shows the different stages of the effect during the prescribed 3 minute wait time for the effect to fully develop, centre left nail was first painted, then pinkie, then index finger, and finally my ring finger's effect is just starting to come through.

All Fingers Dry
Finally, my fingers are lovely and croc-ified! I absolutely love the fact that each nail looks different and each application will always look different, it depends on the thickness of the effect on the base layer. Barry M recommends a thin layer because as I mentioned above I had to remove a finger and start again 'cause I layered it on too thick and nothing happened. But once you have that sussed and sorted you're on your way to beautiful croc effects nails!

Best Effect On My Thumb!

Finished Nails

My favourite design on my fingers is my thumb above. What do you think of the croc effects nail polish from Barry M? Have you tried it? Are you tempted?


A Me to You Jigsaw on Boxing Day

The great Boxing Day debate in my head every year always goes a little something like this: 'Shall I eat more chocolate? More chicken and sausages? Is there any other food in the house? Should I even be eating? In fact, what shall I do today? Which present can I use/play with without everyone getting jealous that I am only using/playing with one thing? Shall I see what's on TV? I wish I could go to the Boxing Day sales...' You see I can never decide what to do, who to be with and what to watch so I said to myself that this year, after all of the Christmas hype from the day itself dies out with the daylight hours, I shall set myself something to actually do on Boxing Day. And the end result has been the above, a lovely 1000 piece Ravensburger jigsaw with my most favourite blue nosed bear in the world, Tatty Teddy from the Carte Blanche 'Me to You' range.

Now some people may wonder why a perfectly mobile and active 20 something would even want to sit down, stationary, at a table and wrestle with fitting those 1000 little pieces together for hours on end. Well, all I can say is that I find it relaxing (until I can't find that one piece to fit in a gap, that is!), fun, and indeed a tiny bit intellectually challenging. You see, all those pieces may look easy enough to fit together but when you're right in there amongst them they have the best way of avoiding detection so it's all about the process of elimination - getting rid of those 998 other pieces that won't fit into the one you've got on the table.

I know many people don't know about my little hobby (I call it a hobby, but I can only manage to spare hours like this here and there when I'm home from work and uni) but I am laying it out on the table, so to speak, for you all to look at. And with the advent of shops in my city that are purely devoted to selling jigsaws, I can tell I'm not the only one fitting puzzle pieces together :)

What do you think of jigsaws? Do you love 'em as much as I do?


Merry Christmas one and all! I've been thoroughly spoilt this year and loving absolutely everything - my little haul's above :)

And how amazing is my Mawi for Disney Couture necklace? Beautiful!

Hope you all had a perfect day, eat, drink and be merry :) xx


Look Beauty Power Lashes Pro Kit

Front of the kit.
It's been a while since my last significant post and here I am, armed with a beautiful camera and able to put some long overdue effort into blogging again. I return amongst the hype of the new Look Beauty range, available at Superdrug with prices ranging from £4 to £18 - most notably nail polish is £5 and lipsticks are £7. I was very tempted to drain my wages today on a few nail polishes and their entire lipstick range because they all looked so amazing, but I resisted and actually bought something which I believe to be great value for money. Whilst I live in a fairly large city in Devon, the Superdrug I visited didn't seem to have a lot of Look beauty products available, perhaps I didn't delve deep enough
Back of the kit.
The goodies inside!
amongst the open testers and the fingerprints in the blushes. My clever little eye did, much to my delight, espy this fabulous eyelash kit retailing at £12. It contains all you need to create beautiful eyes whilst wearing falsies. Now, I am a girl who's quite blessed with camel like lashes, but I love nothing more than the complete face enhancing sensation I get when I look at myself in the mirror when I wear false eyelashes. I instantly feel much more glamorous, more confident and, rather like when I have newly painted nails, I feel like I carry myself differently when I have false lashes on. I always admire the girls who can wear false lashes mixed up in their day to day make up routine, as I have always saved them on myself for a special night out, but when this kit teaches me the expert way of applying them I might just have to venture out and try falsies in the day time.
The kit itself contains two pairs of lashes, 'Oomph Lash' mascara, 'Flirty Flick' eyeliner, lash glue and a contraption that makes it easier to apply the lashes to your eye. I've had a little play around and the mascara is lovely, and so it the eyeliner and I really can't wait to try out the whole kit on Christmas day...mere hours to go now! When you consider that the mascara retails for £7 and the eyeliner for £5 it's almost as if you're receiving the lashes for free, and I urge anyone who's considering buying these two products to consider the Power Lash Pro Kit because what girl would want to turn down some lashes to add to her make up collection?

I'm really impressed with my initial purchases from the Look range and will definitely consider buying more of their products in the future. I've heard many good things about their lipsticks and will be buying one of those next!


Back to blogging properly now I have a camera to take proper pictures! The Blackberry didn't quite keep up with my needs. This is the Nikon Coolpix S5100 in Pink. It's a beaut, takes the picture even before you've held the button down completely! Clever little thing.


The holidays are coming!

Cardigan & Leggings: New Look
Necklace: Accessorize
Dress: Topshop
I am sitting here in this library on the eve eve of my return back home from university. Having been living here pretty much since october 2010, except for Christmas last year and Easter of this year, I am very excited to be returning home to sleep in my nice warm cream painted wooden bed, to feel carpet beneath my feet and to make gingerbread with my dear mum and of course, the holidays are coming!

I feel that now that I have seen the Coca Cola advert on TV, been to a Christmas party, put up a tree in my student house, and have painted my nails with Barry M's Gold Foil Effects nail polish (which I bought on ASOS) I can officially relax and get into the holiday spirit when I reach the end of these 1000 words on my essay!

I hope Father Christmas is good to me this year, and of course, I cannot wait to give out my presents to everyone that I love and care about! :)