ASOS Wishlist May 2017

So my daughter has chickenpox. This is an enlightening experience because I have never actually had chickenpox myself. And no, I don’t have it just now, either. Maybe I’ll catch it from her and it will present itself in a week or two, but right now the only thing I am suffering with is a super infected finger – ouch!

Because of this, I haven’t left the house in a few days, nor making myself presentable because I’ve spent most of my time looking after her (and going on a SIMS4 binge!), so unfortunately, I haven’t had any new looks to present you with. So, for today, I thought I’d do a wishlist, which I don’t think I’ve done since my birthday last year!

When it comes to finding clothes, being plus size can be difficult. It’s not always a case of popping into town and grabbing something. It can be an arduous task to trawl round finding a) things that fit you, b) things you can afford, and c) things you actually like. This isn’t a problem for most people, but when you’re fat, this is the holy grail. And this is a reason I like Asos so much.

Like I said in a previous post, I can’t afford to buy many clothes, but the ones I do get tend to be from online stores like Asos. And the ones I can’t afford go into the handy wishlist, where I sit staring and lusting after the pretties until I can afford them, or they no longer become available and disappear from the site.

So in this vein, here are some of my fave pieces on Asos Curve at the minute:

 

  1. Asos Curve Mini Rara Skirt – £28
  2. Asos Curve Maxi Skirt in Palm Print – £32
  3. Asos Curve Midi Skirt with Asymmetric Poppers – £20
  4. Asos Curve Halterneck Sundress in Gingham – £30
  5. Asos Curve Asymmetric Cami Top in Mixed Floral – £28
  6. Asos Curve Smock Top in Tiers in Gingham – £30
  7. Asos Curve Maxi Tea Dress with Open Back in Floral – £45
  8. Asos Curve Embroidered Long Sleeve Shift Dress – £70
  9. Asos Curve Salon Embroidered Smock Longer Length Midi Dress – £120
  10. Asos Curve Embroidered Enchanted Midi Shift Dress – £60
  11. Asos Curve Kimono in Stripe with Embroidered Back – £60
  12. Lovedrobe Check Culotte Jumpsuit – £55
  13. Asos Curve T-Shirt with Lace Plunge and Sleeve – £25
  14. Asos Curve Mesh Scatter Sequin Mini Dress – £75
  15. Asos Curve Stripe Swing Dress with Ruffle Hem and Tie Front – £35
  16. New Look Plus Distressed Boyfriend Jeans – £24.99
  17. New Look Plus Strappy Lace Bralet – £12.99
  18. Asos Curve the Ultimate Cami with Caging 2 Pack – £14

 

I’m especially in love with anything mustard yellow at the moment, and I’m trying to pull myself out of my comfort zone with patterns and styles… going against the grain in my attempt to reject the ideal of what is “flattering” to fat bodies, and in fact, get that word out of vocab altogether.

So what are you guys lusting after this summer?

Until next time 😉

kirsten-xo

Makeup & Outfit of the Day 04.05.2017

Today I have a post which is actually from a few days ago now which I haven’t had the opportunity to get up yet, and is my makeup and outfit of the day on a day when I wanted to look a lil nicer than usual, but still comfy.

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In case you were not aware, my optimal state is comfort, and I will always opt for that where I can in my clothing choices. Leggings are almost always the go-to for me, something that I would have never expected to happen several years ago, when size 12 me would say “I’m too fat to wear leggings as trousers!” … well, fuck that. They’re comfy as hell and also, while we’re on the subject, there’s no such thing as “too fat to wear”. Wear what you want, when you want. (/fat positivity rant for the day).

So on this particular day we have a khaki zara basics tee, I believe the leggings are Goldigga, some platform velour slip-ons from Topshop, choker from an old Marzia box, and earrings my sister made. All are perfectly accessorised by my favourite Skinny Dip phone case.

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On to makeup!

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I believe I’m in a weird minority of people who choose their makeup before their clothes most days. I pick whatever colour I feel like putting near my face, then whatever clothes. Sometimes they match, sometimes they don’t.

I was playing about with my Urban Decay XX Reloaded palette on this day (and yes, I know it always seems to be this palette, but I’m skint and can’t afford new makeup all the time okay? T_T), and the main colours we have going on here are Acid Rain, Mildew and Moonflower. It was not until after the entire process I realised my eyes were reminiscent of an over-ripe avocado.

Also, I’m really struggling with the photo above as it’s an angle I absolutely hate, but I’m trying to get over things like that. It’s my face.

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Here I am looking fierce and pretending I’m serving LEWKS when really it’s the sun getting in my eyes. Also wow, look how truly terrible my hair is looking as I try to grow out this fringe. Is that a speck of dandruff I see? Iconic.

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Ah, that’s better. Looking a bit cuter and Bambi-eyed here. Can you tell I have nothing to talk about today? It’s all commentary on my face. I’ll give you some product rundowns instead okay? And yes, I’m still working through the last of non-vegan products so there will be stuff here that’s not cruelty-free and so I won’t be linking.

Max Factor Primer
Kat Von D Lock-It Foundation (42 Light Neutral)
Maybelline Matte Maker Powder (Classic Ivory)
Model Co Countour Stick
Barry M Get Up & Glow palette (no longer available but looks almost identical to this new one)
Makeup Revolution Vivid Baked Highlighter (no longer available)
Urban Decay Primer Potion
Urban Decay XX Reloaded palette
Anastasia Dip Brow Pomade (Medium Brown)
L’Oreal Brow Master Brow Mascara
MDMflow Lipstick (Bossy)
Rodial Glamolash Mascara

And here’s a before and after for you. Please try not to scream.

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And that’s it for now folks. Peace out and have an awesome rest of your weekend.

Kirsten xo

Makeup & Outfit of the Day 02.05.2017

Hello lovelies. Today I have a quick MOTD post for you from yesterday, where I got a bit carried away with the pink end of the spectrum.

One of my new goals is to give you guys a bit more of an honest look into my life. Often lifestyle bloggers will do MOTD and OOTD posts, and they consistently look like perfection, but for someone who does this and is also a stay at home mum… well, that’s not always the case. You’ll see that below. Well, at least my makeup is pretty good?

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You’ll have to excuse the rest of my appearance, please! I actually didn’t leave the house yesterday, and despite having nice makeup, the rest of me was a mess!

My favourite bit about this look was probably the highlighter, which is actually Urban Decay eyeshadow Roadstripe, which is a perfect white/purple duochrome I’m in love with (peep that cupid’s bow highlight tho)! Roadstripe is no longer sold individually, but mine comes from the XX Reloaded palette.

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Messy hair, don’t care.

Yes, as you can see, I have accessorised my makeup with an old jumper, unwashed hair I’ve thrown into a bun, and my glasses which… well, they’re necessary to see.

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Oh yeah, you probably haven’t seen my new glasses. These are some Specsavers one I got discounted for ridiculously cheap and I love them. They totally weren’t inspired by any anime characters or anything like that either… (ahem.)

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Outfit highlights include this old marl grey jumper, no bra, and my old ripped jeans you’ll have seen posts of me wearing everywhere last year but now have a massive tear up the side of.

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Sometimes, this is just my life. Sometimes I don’t even put makeup on or get out of my PJs.

#mumlife #depressionlife XD

Kirsten xo

What I’m Into: October 2016

Good morning folks and Happy Hallowe’en!

It’s actually only 6:30am as of the time of me typing these exact words, but the clocks went back here yesterday and my body clock isn’t in sync with them yet.

Despite it being Hallowe’en, I don’t have a spoOoOoOopy post for you today. Next year I will be sure to plan in advance, but as you may have seen from a few posts ago, October has been a very strange all-over-the-place month for me.

Instead, I wanted to do a post on stuff I’m into right now and what I’m obsessing myself with in these past few weeks/ months/ okay some of them are a bit longer than that…
Please note: this is a lifestyle post and not a beauty edit, but if you wanna get an idea of things I like that aren’t necessarily makeup, then read on!

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Okay, listening to older music isn’t something new to me. I have to admit right here and now, I am not adept at listening to music. Music is glorious and wonderful and beautiful and I love it, but I don’t actively seek out new artists or listen to the radio or keep up-to-date with music trends. I have a selection of artists that I like, and I tend to listen to them exclusively or even just certain songs over and over. And a lot of the music I listen to is old music for this reason.

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I have a Tidal account, and on it I have created Playlists to go with different moods. These used to get switched up on a daily basis in terms of what I listened to, but recently it has pretty much been exclusively my 80s and 90s list, which if you have a Tidal account, you can listen to here.

If you don’t, here are some Youtube links for you:

  1. Africa – Toto
  2. Don’t You Want Me – The Human League
  3. A Little Respect – Erasure
  4. Wicked Game – Chris Isaak
  5. Psycho Killer – Talking Heads
  6. Missing – Everything But The Girl
  7. There Is A Light That Never Goes Out – The Smiths
  8. Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now – The Smiths
  9. Everybody Wants to Rule the World – Tears for Fears
  10. Shout – Tears for Fears
  11. Head Over Heels – Tears for Fears
  12. Life On Mars – David Bowie
  13. Heroes – David Bowie
  14. Space Oddity – David Bowie
  15. Love Will Tear Us Apart – Joy Division

I know it’s only a small selection of songs, but I love them, and I probably listen to this playlist like three times a day at the moment. If you don’t have time to listen to them all please just listen to these couple:


Basically, this playlist reminds me of growing up in the 90s and listening to music with my Dad on a Saturday morning in the kitchen while we made breakfast and sometimes did baking together. Of course, I do have recent music I love as well, but this playlist just makes me feel all nostalgic.

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Something I probably haven’t spoken about on here before is my love of anime.
I got in to anime when I got with my husband seven and a half years ago, initially just to appease him, but then I actually started enjoying it myself.

We first started out watching a lot of fighting and action anime. Some I enjoyed, some I didn’t. One of my big loves of way back then was Bleach, for example, but I never really got that into Naruto. After a few years I discovered that I had my own kind of tastes in anime, and I started watching some independently. But I then discovered that the anime I loved watching was also his guilty pleasure… and yes, I’m talking about shōjo.

If you’re unfamiliar, shōjo is a genre of manga or anime that is primarily targeted at teenage girls and young women. The subject matter is usually romance, and a ton of these take place in a school setting. I have a long list of anime I love that fall into this genre, but recently I discovered Yuri!!! On Ice and fell in love.

If you follow me on Tumblr, you probably know what I’m talking about. If you’re not following me on Tumblr, why? Go do it now! I’m kidding, you don’t have to.

It’s about ice skating. However, like a lot of anime, you don’t have to be an expert or particularly like the main subject matter at hand to get into it. It’s an ongoing series, and it currently only has four episodes, but it already has a massive fan base online. Particularly Tumblr. I wonder why that is?

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Oooooh the homoerotic subtext, right.

Listen, I’ll be straight (ha!) about it: you’re probably not going to enjoy this if watching sexual tension between two guys isn’t really your thing. There’s a lot of it. But at the heart of this anime is a really pure story to be told, and the main characters are just likeable and you want them to succeed. Which, ya know, is a good thing when investing in a story. We’re not too deep into it yet, but you can see the storyline unfolding into something beautiful questioning how to find yourself when people’s perceptions are based on the expectations thrust upon you.

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Plus the fact, the composition and artwork of this anime is just beautifully done.

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If you want to give it a go, you can see the English subbed version via KissAnime here.

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I’m gonna go ahead and guess that most of you know what I’m talking about. There’s been a lot of advertisement online and on TV for this, despite it not even being new. However, if you’ve missed it then I will expand.

Skyrim is a video game that was originally released in 2011 (11.11.11) on older gaming platform models XBOX 360 and Playstation 3, as well as Microsoft Windows for PC gaming. The game was the 5th in the Elder Scrolls series and was created by Bethesda, RPG gods who also created the Fallout franchise.

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Skyrim is an alternate universe of Nordic Gods, dragons, magic and civil war. Imagine Lord of the Rings with vikings and you’re not too far off. It’s not a game I intended to get into initially, and when it was initially released I watched my husband play it and palmed it off as fantasy nonsense. However, within a few weeks I was playing it, and I ended up completing it before him.

Recently, Skyrim has had a rerelease due to the popularity of the game, and Bethesda have updated the graphics and some of the gameplay to create a game that now works beautifully on newer platforms, the XBOX One and Playstation 4.

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I couldn’t resist. It is one of our favourite games and I just had to see what the rerelease was like, and let me tell you, it’s beautiful. Playing it makes it seem like I was only playing it a few weeks ago and not five years ago, despite the fact that its graphics are hugely improved. This is probably a testament to the developers in keeping the core gameplay as it was.

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If you’re into this kinda game, I definitely recommend checking it out.

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I’m not going to make this long, I promise.

If you know anything about me at all outside of this blog, it’s that I am a massive Sherlock fangirl. I’m talking BBC Sherlock by the way, although I do engage with and enjoy other versions. Sherlock, and the Sherlock fandom, is something I spend a lot of time engaging with, discussing, analysing and just basically obsessing over.

However, I hadn’t actually watched it in a little while. Every so often the whim arises to throw on an episode, but more than watching the actual show, I do the other stuff as described above more. This is what happens when you have to wait like THREE YEARS in between series. But the other day, just after the GBBO finale, we received the trailer for series four which had already been released, except this time it had a date of release:

Obviously those of us heavily in the fandom had suspected a January release, but the confirmation of such sent us into meltdown. So now, I’m going back and revisiting old episodes, and will probably be rewatching over and over right up until New Years’ Day.

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I try not to obsess over Sherlock on most of my social media, however if you are interested in reading my angst, I do have a tumblr sideblog on which I vent all my frustrations over this goddamn show, which you can find here if you really want to.

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Onto something a little cheerier and festive now: Christmas shopping!

Christmas is my favourite time of the year. I don’t really like the cold, however it somehow feels okay when you can walk into a house with warming flashy lights from a Christmas tree, sweet festive-smelling candles and home baking, which there always is in this household around Christmas. I love Christmas, okay?

But one of my favourite parts of Christmas is giving gifts to people I love. Sometimes this is utterly stress-inducing, and because we don’t have a great deal of money I almost always end up feeling like we haven’t bought people enough, but I still like to go out and find stuff that I know a certain someone is going to like.

My Christmas shopping starts at the beginning of the year. Seriously. If you’re savvy like me, you know the best place to start looking for the next year’s gifts is in the January sales (just make sure you check your use-by dates on edibles and skincare please, peeps!). The rest of the year is then spent keeping an eye out for things that people will enjoy when I’m out and about, and filling up my big Christmas gift box in my house.

I’m always online looking for stuff, bookmarking things and writing down ideas. I just love it and I can’t wait until we are truly going into Christmas countdown mode tomorrow!

 

And there we go. I hope to do some more posts like this with online makeup and clothing picks too. What do you think?

 

Kirsten xo

ARRAN AROMATICS – A REVIEW

In case any of you didn’t know, I am from Scotland. I was born in Glasgow, but have spent my life up and down between Scotland and England. I currently live in England and think this is where I’ll stay from now on, but I adore Scotland. Especially the West coast which is my second home.

One of the things that I love about Scotland are the things that you can discover there. If you wander through Glasgow you will literally hear bagpipe music, you will sometimes see musicians dressed as Vikings, and you will note lots of Scottish-themed shops full of wares made here, including – of course – tartans, brooches, socks, scarfs and jewellery.
There are also lots of stores which specialise in aromatics and skincare if you wander down Buchanan street, such as Molten Brown, but find yourself in Buchanan Galleries and you will see the large new Arran Aromatics store that’s recently moved from Princes Square.

If you’re unfamiliar with Arran Aromatics, then you should get yourself acquainted. The company was started in 1989 by a husband and wife in the kitchen of their cottage at home on the island of Arran.

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[On this map you can also see Largs, where we lived until last September]

They were inspired by the sights and scents on the beautiful island, and tried to capture them in the soaps and body creams they started creating. Their business grew quickly and they began to expand their range, creating candles in 1997, miniatures for the Malmaison Hotel in 2001, and a baby collection in 2003.

Their first flagship store was at Princes Square in Glasgow, alongside other upmarket and unique luxury stores, and they now have 10 stores over Scotland, and numerous other stockists.

I came to discover Arran Aromatics in about 2008, when I had moved back to Scotland for university and received a miniature gift set from my Aunty. To receive this was such a treat, being a broke student who didn’t have much money to invest in themselves, and I fell in love with the therapeutic and aromatic fragrances. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to invest in much for myself then, but I used to love going into Princes Square at Christmas time to buy Arran Aromatics gifts for family.

I’ve been familiar with Arran Aromatics for years now, so it surprised me to learn that they have no stores across England yet, as their fragrances and skin care are so beautiful. One of my favourite items recently has been the Bergamot and Ginger shower gel, which I haven’t managed to snap a photo of myself as I went through it so quickly.

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[This is also currently on offer at the Arran Aromatics store at £6.30 for 300ml!]

All of their products are beautifully packaged, and as I have said and will go onto say several more times, smell beautiful. They are most definitely spa quality products at a fraction of the price.

I was recently up in Scotland visiting family, and my Nan gave me a package. It was actually a Christmas present that she had given to me when we were up for Christmas, but I had forgotten to take back home with me. I had completely forgotten what was inside it, and was so overjoyed when I opened it to discover two Arran Aromatics scented candles.

Now, I love scented candles. I’ve had an obsession with them since I was a teenager and my bedroom got redecorated into a “grown up” bedroom, and I would burn scented candles constantly to fit my room’s aesthetic, to smell nice, and to just help me chill out.
My obsession with candles hasn’t always been a good thing: in 2006 I knocked one over and got some severe burns on my hand. Don’t play with candles, kids!
That aside, I loved them. I wasn’t able to burn any when I moved into student accommodation at University (they weren’t allowed), so when my now-husband and I moved in together in 2010 I went a bit scented candle crazy.

The scented candles I bought the most of, and still love, were Yankee Candles. I’m sure we’re all very acquainted with them, so I won’t go in to that too much. Yankee Candles are rather expensive, though, so we moved onto buying cheap fragrances from places like Tesco. These candles smelled alright, but were not as potent as more expensive ones and burned out very quickly (we were having to buy them every few days, which ended up seeming just as expensive). Because of this, it’s been a while since we’ve used scented candles, and to be honest I didn’t even think about the fact that Arran Aromatics did them.

What a fool.

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The first candle I pulled out was this Parfumeur collection candle in Soft Cinnamon. I am absolutely gutted that I can’t link you guys to this one as it is part of their Christmas collection, however as you can see, the packaging is stunning. Arran Aromatics still offer a rebranded Perfumer collection, now with gorgeous grey and tartan packaging, and I would particularly like to try the Cedarwood and Citrus one (which is currently on my birthday wish list!).

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These candles smell amazing before you even pull them out of the box. I had them sat in our living room for a couple of days without even lighting them and they had already made the room smell amazing. Once you light them, it’s even more magical.

Sometimes with scented candles I can find the scent to be overpowering. I can light them and within an hour be sick of smelling them, but the smell has already saturated everything. I don’t feel that way with these at all. The scent is potent. You’re not left wondering “is this a scented candle? What scent is it? Does it have a scent?” as you can with cheaper ones, but it is so refined that you can leave it burning for hours without getting sick of it at all, and even when it’s not burning be left with a less saturated but still beautiful scent, just from it being in the same room.

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This one, as already stated, is from their Christmas collection in the fragrance “soft cinnamon”, and I have never heard of a more aptly named fragrance. I am a big cinnamon lover, and all things Christmas scents, but I’d venture to guess that even those who don’t like cinnamon would like this candle.
The scent is as described – “soft”, and that’s exactly how I’d describe it. You don’t get that overpowering whack of different fragrances that other Christmas candles often give you, where it’s super cinnamon-y and sugary sweet and musky and vanilla-y all at once. There is something gentler and more refined here: a cinnamon with a white musk scent.

As it’s already the middle of August (what?!), we’re now heading toward the Autumn months and the nights are already starting to get darker quicker. As such, I’ve been burning this one after my daughter goes to bed in the evenings over the past couple of nights, while my husband and I chill out in front of the telly, and it is so relaxing.

The other fragrance I got is one that has a bit of a backstory: After the Rain.

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As stated on the Arran Aromatics website:

“Janet had long held a desire to capture her favourite natural aroma. That fresh, succulent scent of a garden in the magically calm moments following a summer rainstorm.

After much consideration with our in-house perfumers, and slow nurturing of different, sensual blends to uncover the aromatic secret, it eventually revealed itself. After the Rain was brought to life in a heady bouquet of rose, musk and citrus, with an effervescent palette of exhilarating base notes and subtly provocative accents. It has been our most popular fragrance ever since.”

Both of the candles I have are extremely relaxing, but this one is a sharper musk fragrance because of the citrus, so I keep this one on my desk to burn while I’m working (like right now!) as it makes me feel somehow relaxed, yet awake at the same time.

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This is the shorter version of their After the Rain candle, but they also have a tall pillar version as well. This short one is only £12.50 but has an approximate burn time of 100 hours, which could last you ages depending on how often you use it.
After the Rain also has an extensive collection, which includes shea butter lotions and bath salts, as it is their most popular fragrance.

All in all, I am absolutely delighted that I managed to rediscover Arran Aromatics and these candles. I think we all forgot how much fragrance can play a part in our disposition throughout the day, and how much it can truly affect our moods, even when just chilling out in the evening.

As I’ve grown older, I have started seeking scents in my toiletries, skincare and just the environment around me that are more refined and aromatic than those I would’ve chosen in the past. I particularly veer toward essential oils and aromatherapy to give me what I seek in this area, and Arran Aromatics are perfect for that.

Kirsten xo