Friday, 29 July 2011

Weekly Blog Round Up - week 18


Grace designed some yummy candy striped nails http://ooooohpretty.blogspot.com/2011/07/candy-cane-nails.html?m=1


Sharon is having a giveaway to celebrate her blog birthday http://polishinfatuated.blogspot.com/2011/07/giveaway-polish-infatuated-turns-one.html

Nicky tested out OPI it’s my year for their new collection http://nicnacksnails.blogspot.com/2011/07/opi-its-my-year.html


Ladyluck is also celebrating her blog birthday with a giveaway! http://ladyluckbeauty.blogspot.com/2011/07/my-first-giveaway.html

Sarah created a movie buff manicure and demonstrated some SdP plates http://spellbindingnails.blogspot.com/2011/07/sdp-d20-night-with-some-movies.html

Theresa showed us the amazing new Gelish Aurora collection http://theresabloor.blogspot.com/2011/07/new-gelish-aurora-efx-third-nail.html

Stacie played with some holographic paint flakes from ebay http://kawaiinailart.blogspot.com/2011/07/holographic-paint-flakes-fun.html

Have a great weekend!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace xoxo

Thursday, 28 July 2011

The big blogger debate!

This post is slightly off topic for a beauty blog but it's something I feel quite strongly about.
Recently on twitter there have been a few Blogger chats/ debates which take place weekly, they were started with great intention, a place where like minded bloggers could ask questions, pick up advice and find other great bloggers.
This was definitely the case with the first couple of chats that I took part in, but very quickly it became a place where a lot of negativity started to brew! After this I decided not to take part in it any more as the same thing kept happening. A friendly debate is fine but when it crosses the line from being constructive its time to stop!
The thing with any kind of debate is that every one is entitled to their own opinion and not everyone is going to share yours! It seems that some people just don't grasp this and it soon becomes a personal attack on people who share a different view on things. That is bad enough but it then seems to have a rolling effect where other people then get involved and what started as two people having a difference in opinion becomes a massive topic on twitter!
It is really sad that it has become this way and almost feels a little like being back at school where you cant have a group of girls with out it getting bitchy! Now don't get me wrong there definitely have been a couple of cases where one side has been more that out of order but by keeping it going with comments and discussion all that happens is more attention is given to this person and it can be misconstrued as you being as bad as them! Believe me I love to have the last word but remember everything you say is there for all to see and sometimes it pays to be the bigger person and just walk away!
One thing that I have noticed is the amount of people that say what a great community we are part of as a beauty blogger and that blogging should be fun, this is very true, I have met some really lovely people through blogging but with a very small minority of people thinking its ok to behave the way they have put a negative spin on our blogging community!
I know of two people that were completely shot down when they voiced their opinion which went against the masses and have since stopped blogging, especially after a comment being made that "I will make sure no one reads your blog" now really!! This person 10 minutes earlier had been one of the people saying blogging should be fun!

In life you will face negativity there is no getting away from it, but it IS up to you how you deal with it!
Your blog is your blog, no one has the right to tell you what to do with it, If you are happy that's the most important thing. At the end of the day if someone doesn't like something you have written they don't have to read it.
Blogging is supposed to be fun, something you enjoy doing, there should be no pressure and no rules.
So please lets keep our community a fun place to be!

This post is not aimed at anyone in particular and is not intended to offend any one, I just love blogging and what it means to me, and I am sure you do too! Happy blogging everyone!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

"Quote of the day"

"Never let success go to your head, 
but Never let failure go to your heart"
...Anon

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Weight Loss Wednesday - week 4!

Well this week I'm not too disappointed but I'm also not jumping for joy as the scales showed
-/+ 0lbs
My reasoning behind this weeks non budging of pounds may seem strange to some but I didn't eat enough! I have always found that when I eat small amounts regularly I will tend to maintain my weight or have a steady weight loss, but when I am a little more speradic with my eating habbits it all goes wrong! With weight watchers you are given a set amount of points to eat on a daily basis which is worked out taking your current weight, height, gender and age in to consideration. The amount will then be the correct amount of food you need to eat to help your body lose weight and by not eating enough this will not happen! So my aim for this week is to be more organised and make sure I'm not ending up with lots of points left in the evening that I don't feel like eating!

This past weekend we had a BBQ for my dad's birthday, now for anyone on a diet an event with a free flow of food is somewhat of a danger zone! But not this one, we freshly prepared salads so that I could point the whole recipe and then work out how much of each thing to have! We made a coleslaw with a natural yoghurt, extra light mayo, mustard and lemon dressing, Cous Cous and roasted vegetable salad and a greek bean dish which is one of my favourites with butter beans covered in onions, garlic, tomatoes and plenty of oregano (I will put some of the recipes on here next week)!
The other diet friendly tip I have is to swap your meat for quorn (that is if you like it!), the point value is so much lower and it doesn't actually taste too bad, you can always cover it in ketchup!
So even when you are following a diet you should never feel deprived, a little forward planning goes a long way!

Grace xx  

Candy Cane Nails

This week my sweet tooth has helped me with nail design! Look how pretty these sweets are!

 I love all the colours so have put them on to a french polish design!




For this look I used Heart Throb as my base and Alpine Snow for the white tip, both are from OPI. I then used a selection of nail art paints to paint the stripes!

My nails are back to normal now so I can get back to creating more nail designs!

Stay Gorgeous 

Grace x

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Tough Love

We all have one of those friends that comes to us for a shoulder to cry on. They ask us for advice which they never listen too, still expecting us to be there when history repeats itself, we listen attentively nodding our heads at the appropriate times and by the end of it all no matter what the issues were we send them off saying "I really hope it works out for you"!
Well I would class myself as a good friend and would always hope my friends felt they could come to me in their time of need but something I have learnt over the past couple of years is that to be a genuinely good friend you need to be prepared to hand out a little bit of tough love every now and again!
I'm not saying you should look your friend in the eye and say "well that was stupid", but sometimes they may just need to be pulled back down to earth and a few tactful words from you could do just the trick.
I recently had to dish out the tough love when a friend of mine (in her head) was being made to feel bad by other people, but as an outsider I could see that actually this wasn't the case! As lovely as my friend is, she is guilty of asking for advice but taking no notice at all so I had taken to nodding and smiling rather than advising, but on this day something just clicked and I couldn't sit and not say anything this time, when I found myself saying "actually no body is making you feel that way apart from you and I think maybe you need to try and sort out the issues that are making you feel like this" it was like time stood still for a few seconds whilst she looked at me as if I had done something awful but then she said "Thank you! Your such a good friend."
I can tell you now, that was not the reaction I was expecting, but by being honest yet kind people should realise that you actually only have their best interests at heart and that you care enough to to be truthful.
So next time your friend calls you because her boyfriend has cheated on her for the tenth time or flatmate never seems to get past the first date, Don't smile and nod, give them a small handful of tough love.

Grace xx 

Monday, 25 July 2011

Make Up Monday - Poptastic Pink!

Well as promised in last weeks Make Up Monday I have done a tutorial this week using the MUA poptastic palette!

I had originally pictured an 80's inspired eye look but the pinks kept calling me so I chose to go poptastic pink instead!




To create this look I primed the eye lids and then used a white shimmer eye shadow over the whole lid and into the crease as a base colour.
Using the MUA poptastic palette I pressed a light pink (1) into the centre of the lid and then blended it out ward and up to the crease, Using a darker pink (2) I created a V shape along the outer edge of the crease and the upper lash line, with the eye shadow that is left on your brush sweep this under your lower lash line too. Use the same technique you would use for a smoky eye.
The next step is optional for darker skin tones but for fair skin tones use the purple (3) to trace over the darker pink to tone the pink slightly ( we don't want to look like we have a bruised eye!).
Apply eyeliner to the upper lid and then using just the product left on the brush blend it into the lower lash line. Curl the lashes and apply mascara.
I then applied more of the white shimmer to lighten the look, but this is optional too.

To see exactly how I got this look take a look at my tutorial

I hope you like this look and that you give it a try! If pink is not your colour you could try the same technique using any colour you like!

Have a great Make Up Monday

Stay gorgeous

Grace x

Friday, 22 July 2011

Weekly Blog Round Up - week 17


This weeks best of the best!


Claire used craft glitter and shellac to make a gorgeous pedicure http://toptwentynails.blogspot.com/2011/07/rockstar-glitter-toes-using-shellac.html

Ladyluck swatched a rare polish with cute holographic stars and moons in it http://ladyluckbeauty.blogspot.com/2011/07/i-give-you-moon-and-stars.html


Stacie create an illustration inspired cupcake manicure http://kawaiinailart.blogspot.com/2011/07/cupcake-nail-art-illustration-style.html

Sharon swatched the amazing Glitter Gal black holographic http://polishinfatuated.blogspot.com/2011/07/glitter-gal-black-holographic.html

Grace shows us how to do it like a pro! http://ooooohpretty.blogspot.com/2011/07/do-it-like-pro.html


Emily created a WAH nails inspired look http://emilysnailfiles.blogspot.com/2011/07/wah-nails-aztec-design-and-little-bit.html (welcome back em! XD)


Chell swatched up Butter London in Victoriana - Yum! http://polishwonderland-byshella.blogspot.com/2011/07/butter-london-victoriana.html


I hope you have a great weekend

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Expose Self Tanning Mousse - Review


I came across a product that is a bargain, but it would either be a complete fail or an amazing beauty find!!

It is Expose Summer Bronzer, It's a mousse self tanner. It is suitable for the Face, Body & Legs. It contains Aloe Vera to keep the skin hydrated whilst tanning!


I applied the mousse straight after I had a bath so there was no product or oils on the skin, I had also lightly exfoliated to ensure there was no dead skin cells lurking around. The mousse isn't coloured at all so you can't see where you have applied but it does feel slightly sticky at first so you can feel where it is on the skin. You have to work quite quickly as it drys super fast!

I left it to develop over night, the one thing I didn't like was the smell!! It was like being back in the olden days when fake tans were first around, in fact it did wake me up once or twice! But the result was worth the smell, It was a very subtle colour but there was no streaks at all and once I had a shower the smell went completely!

For a darker colour you would need to build it up over a couple of applications but for an every day healthy glow this product is perfect!

Where is it from I hear you say? Its from Pound Land which of course means it cost £1.00. So I rate this as a bargain beauty find that you should definitely give a try!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Weight Loss Wednesday - week 3!

Well this week has been another success with the scales weighing in at 
-2lbs
Which brings it to a total of 8lbs!

As you can imagine I am extremely happy with the results so far. Last weekend I went to London to stay with my sister who very sweetly phoned earlier in the week to find out what things she should stock her fridge with to ensure I stayed on plan! On Saturday we went to pizza express in the evening and as I had managed not to eat anything other than breakfast I had 33 points to use up just for diner! I know its not sensible to do that but everything went a bit pear shaped!!

So I got out my ww eating out guide and worked out what yumminess I could have and decided on a Quattro Formaggi which clocked up 20 points, I can honestly say it was totally worth the wait to eat it and I enjoyed every mouthful! 

My mum and sister had been into Covent Garden and popped into the Australian shop and picked up my favourite biscuits ever Tim Tams (3points each) so I decided that I would have a cuppa and two tim tam experiences (I will tell you all about that in another post!) back at home for my pudding! I was completley stuffed by this time so was happy to forget about the extra few points I had left over!

So all in all I have had a successful weight loss and enjoyed what would normally be classed as BAD food! Just goes to show how a little of what you fancy (in moderation of course) isn't always a bad rule to go by!

Grace xx

Do It Like a Pro!

One of my biggest pet peeves is seeing photos of really badly painted nails! I have been asked a few times to do a tutorial on how to paint your nails like a professional so here it is!

I have made two tutorial videos one on a dark colour and one for French polish. Painting your nails should be really simple but all it takes is a shaky hand or an over loaded brush to ruin the look! So here are my tips for painting your nails like a pro!

DARK POLISH
 BAD
GOOD

The main mistake people make is trying to get the polish too close to the cuticle line, it actually looks more professional and cleaner if you leave a small gap all the way around the edges.
  • Make your first brush stroke through the centre of the nail then fill in the rest of the nail.
  • place the brush on the nail and then press downwards to fan the brush outwards this will create the line around the cuticle line then you can follow that line for the rest of the nail.
  • Don't over load the brush with polish
  • Don't over work the polish, if it is streaky you will normally get a better coverage with a second coat.
FRENCH POLISH

 BAD
GOOD
With French Polish, I think people try to be too neat! I know I was one of them but when someone showed me how to do it in a more relaxed way it definitely made a difference!
  • Paint across the tip, you will get a smoother line this way.
  • Place the brush onto the nail and rotate the finger rather than the brush.
  • Don't worry about getting it on the skin of the finger tips, you can go back and clean it up (no one will ever know!)
  • Sweep across the nail in one smooth movement, if you need to do a second coat you can.
  • Follow the natural shape of the nail, it won't look right otherwise.
  • Fake it! If you have a broken nail just take the white polish further down to give the illusion of a longer nail tip.
For a better idea of how to paint like a pro, take a look at my tutorial videos!



I hope these tips help, if you have any question please leave me a comment.

Stay gorgeous

Grace x

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

The Only Way Is Blogging!

I went along to TOWIB at the weekend in London which was organised by the very lovely LondonBeauty Queen. It was an event that was for bloggers to catch up with other bloggers and put a face to the screen name! Everyone was welcome whether you had been blogging forever or have just started! I was a tiny bit nervous as I didn't know anyone but once I was there the nerves disappeared as everyone was so friendly and welcoming.

We were treated to make up demos from MUA with the very talented make up artist Katie Hughes, a talk about the fab new products from Dove and a Q&A from top bloggers BritBeautyBlogReallyRee and the LondonBeautyQueen herself! We also got amazing goodie bags (for more info on the products please click here).

Katie used the brand new Pro Range from MUA to create three looks on three gorgeous models!
Sabrina from A little Obsessed with Make Up Artist Katie Hughes after creating a Red Carpet Glamour look!
 Sophie from Sophie Is Made Up in the middle of creating a Smoky Eye!
Natalie from Blush Blend Beauty with a Funky Festival look using the Poptastic palette from MUA!

 All these goodies are from Dove and us lucky girls got to take some home to try out!
Some of the lovely ladies that attended TOWIB!

It was a great day and the best way to meet other bloggers, be introduced to some fantastic products, pick up tips and a very good excuse for a cocktail or two!
Another TOWIB event is already being organised due to this one being a great success and it will be 15th October more details are to be confirmed but you can follow the TOWIB blog or facebook for all the details of the upcoming event and also info on who attended this one!
I hope to see you there!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Monday, 18 July 2011

Make Up Monday - MUA Pro Range

I'm cheating a little bit with this weeks Make Up Monday as I am not doing a tutorial or make up tips, but I am going to tell you about the MUA pro range that is being launched this month!

This range of make up has been designed by MUA along with make up artist Lisa Valencia as part of the team to ensure they brought out a range that was great quality but staying at affordable price!  I got to see these products at TOWIB in London at the weekend (find out more about it in tomorrows post), the team from MUA (Make Up Academy) were there to talk to us and demonstrate with the new products and to make it even better we all got goodie bags at the end with some of the new products to play with! If I am completely honest I was a tad sceptical about how good the quality could be for such low prices but I am more than happy to eat my words as they are AMAZING!

As a make up artist I do find it hard when you buy palettes which more unusual colours in as they don't get used that often and for hygiene reasons its not ideal to have them for too long but with ranges like MUA you don't have to worry about wasting money! Their Pro range palettes have 12 eye shadows in and cost just £4.00, the quality is great, the powder doesn't drop too much and the pigment is really high so you get full colour with out to much product!

 This palette aptly named Poptastic is perfect for creating on trend colour blocking looks, also a great item to pack for festival goers!
Heaven & Earth is a palette full of more neutral and muted tones, an essential palette for everyone as the colours will work well on all skin tones. Great for beginners as you can experiment with out having to go too wild! You will be in smoky eye heaven with this palette!
The palettes come with a double ended sponge applicator brush.

The primer priced at £4.00, this is quite a light product and would be applied after moisturiser before foundation a top tip from Lisa Valencia is to apply with a foundation brush, this will ensure even coverage.

The MUA pro and standard range are available from superdrug and their counter is well worth a visit just be prepared to part with your cash as you will want it all (I know I do!)

So watch out for next weeks Make Up Monday, I will use the MUA products to create next weeks look!

Have you used MUA products? Which are your favourites?

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Friday, 15 July 2011

It's ok to LOL!

One thing I love more than anything is laughing! No matter what you are laughing at you always feel brighter after. A couple of years back I went to a laughter group (please don't stop reading, I promise I'm not completely mental!), I don't know how I heard of it but it sounded like fun so I took my mum along for what promised to be therapy through laughter!

Well what a bunch of nutters!!!! The man that ran the class was eccentric to say the least (and a little sweaty!), he started the class calmly with a few breathing exercises and a gentle giggle, before we knew it we were told to walk around the room in a circle and interact with other people, that doesn't seem to bad I hear you say? It was fine until he said now pretend you are a dog! I looked at my mum with a 'I'm so sorry I brought you to this, please don't make me walk home' look on my face, we carried on in our circle pretending to be a dog when he said now you are a blade of grass....and now its raining, well I stood quite close to my mum, I thought it could look like we were huddling together in the rain, when a man huddled into us and said I'm coming under your umbrella! What Umbrella you plonker, there is NO umbrella, we are blades of grass we don't have arms!! Whilst all this is going on the whole room is laughing, so although it was weird it was working!
At the end of the longest hour of our lives he told us all to laugh when ever we could and not inside, it should be aloud to get the full benefit! Hmmmm...

The next morning I woke up and headed for the shower, next thing I know I'm laughing hysterically out lout all by myself for no reason at all, but you know what, I felt great! Since then I no longer keep my laughter to a little giggle inside, Im more than happy to LOL!

This picture of me and my mum always makes me laugh!
So the moto of my story is that it is ok to LOL, infact it should be compulsory! The feeling when you laugh so much you actually cry is one of the best feelings ever, and I challenge you all to do it as often as you can!

Grace xx

Weekly Blog Round Up - week 16

Take a look at what everyone has been up to this week!



The Nail Addict was feeling lovey dovey this week http://thenailaddict.blogspot.com/2011/07/love-nails.html


Sarah used her plates to create this celtic knot manicure http://spellbindingnails.blogspot.com/2011/07/big-sdp-f-golden-celtic-design.html

Jen got her party nails sorted with a Holographic from Claire’s http://moondancerjen.blogspot.com/2011/07/party-nails.html


Grace showed us some of the new OPI nice Stems collection http://ooooohpretty.blogspot.com/2011/07/new-opi-summer-colours.html


Stacie freehanded some roses http://kawaiinailart.blogspot.com/2011/07/pink-roses-on-baby-blue-nail-art.html


Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Shoe Haul!

I have never really done a haul post before, but seeing as I got a few pairs of shoes at the weekend I thought I would!

I had to show you all these shoes as they are all sparkly and I LOVE them! Bet you can't guess where I got them from?? Well they don't call me the queen of Primark for nothing!


 Here are the three pairs that I got, all from Primark and all sparkly!

 I really only intended on getting some super basic flip flops for throwing on day to day so when I saw these I had to have them, Practicality and glitter, what a perfect combination! And a complete bargain at £1.50!
 I saw these a month or so ago but for some reason I didn't get them, I now know that reason is because I am psychic and secretly knew they would go down in price! They are now £4.60! These are great for day wear and also evening as they have the diamant√© strip along the front of the foot! 
I don't even think I need to say anything about these, the sparkle speaks for itself! These are actually jelly shoes, I used to hate these when I was little but when my mum held these up I practically knocked everyone out of my way with my crutches and yelled I have to have them! Now these were the most expensive at £5.00!

So all in all a very successful shoe shop, and seeing as I can't wear heels at the moment I think I deserve glittery flats!

Quick hurry down to Primark and grab yourself some glittery bargains!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Weight Loss Wednesday - week 2!

Well last week saw the beginning of my weight loss journey and this week has been another successful week with the scales showing a result of

-2lbs  

Woop! I am very pleased with that, especially considering the amount of food I'm having to eat!
I found when I followed weight watchers before that I was eating more food than ever which is sometimes frustrating when you get to the end of the day and find you still have 10 points left to have! That's when I find Haribo come in handy!

Over the past week I kept feeling the need for something sweet in the afternoon to go with a cuppa, I looked at the fruit bowl for inspiration but an apple just wasn't going to satisfy my craving! Then I remembered I had some Carmel Snack-a-jacks and it was then I created .....
The Caranana Treat!

For this you will need 1 banana (0 points) and 2 Jumbo caramel Snack-a-jacks (1 point each)
 Peel the banana and split in half, simple mash it up and spread over the two snack-a-jacks!
 Have with your afternoon cuppa and your sweet craving will be satisfied! This sweet treat is 2 pro points.

Yummy!

What do you have when you are craving something sweet? 

Grace xx

New OPI summer colours

My nails are awful at the moment and keep breaking so in an effort to give them a little break from nail varnish I haven't done any nail art this week! Instead I am showing you the newest mini packs from OPI that I picked up at the weekend!

First off I have Bright Idea, This set has three Bright varnishes (That's Hot! Pink, Atomic Orange & Teal the cows come home) plus you get a mini Rapid Dry top coat (great for your hand bag essentials!)



These colours are great for the summer, they are really bright and eye catching. The only thing that will make them look even better than they already do is a tan!

The other set I picked up was Nice Stems! This is a four varnish set with a pale white/pink, a coral pink, shimmer fuchsia and a clear pink glitter (Play the Peonies, Come to Poppy, Be a Dahl-ia won't you? & I lily love you)!



 These colours will look lovely on all skin tones , the glitter polish is really versatile as you could wear it on its own or pop it on top of another colour for a bit of added sparkle!

These sets sell out really quickly, so if you are able to buy them from your wholesaler I suggest you do it soon! I picked mine up at Sally's but I know they are available at most OPI stockists.

Hopefully nail art will be back next week if my nails are better, any design requests or ideas you would like to see?

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Cutest bracelets on the block!

The modern day friendship bracelet has become one of the trendiest things to have on your arm and now that they have added sparkles in to the mix I am well and truly on board! My only issue is the price, with some companies charging £22.00 for a bracelet mainly made out of a piece of embroidery thread, I think that takes the biscuit! If I had known when I used to make them in the playground at school and sell them to my friends for 10p that in a few (ok a lot) of years time I would be on to a winner I may have stuck at it! 

Luckily I have found some very cheap alternatives at Primark!

 This set of two (also available in pink) cost just £1.50
 This sparkling beauty (available in neon pink and lime) cost £2.00
They all have slip knot fastening so one size really does fit all!
I know this isn't a friendship bracelet but it's very pretty and matched my colour theme! Its also from Primark and cost £1.00 

So if you want to be on trend at as little cost as possible Primark is definitely the place to go! 

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x

Monday, 11 July 2011

Make Up Monday - Subtle Glamour!

This Make Up Monday I am showing you a look I like to call Subtle Glamour, It's very easy to do and makes you look glamorous with out having to pile on lots of products!

Going out straight from work can sometimes be a complete nightmare, having to carry loads of extra things with you, your make up bag suddenly looks more like a suitcase! Well after reading this you will be able to take you look from daytime to playtime with in minutes!

 (sorry the picture quality isn't the best!)


To create this look I only added two extra products to my normal routine!

1. Barry M Dazzle dust in shade 51 use this to create a line along the crease of your eyelid
2. New ID double ended eye liner, Use a liquid liner to create a dramatic line along the upper lash line then swap to a pencil liner to darken the inner third of the upper water line.
3. Falsies Mascara from Maybelline, Curl your lashes and give them an extra coat of mascara
4. High Brow from Benefit, Use this highlighting pencil under the eye brow and the inner corner by the tear duct. 


The barry M Dazzle dust and the High Brow pencil were the two extra products that I added.

Then for my lips I kept them fairly light. I applied a coat of Lip Plump from Benefit as my primer and then a light covering of a natural pink lipstick

 Pull Over from Benefit

To see exactly how I got this look please check out my tutorial video!


This is such a simple way to add instant glamour to your look! I hope you like it and give it a go!

Stay Gorgeous

Grace x