Olympic Special: What's In My Travel Make-Up Bag?

Hey team!

Well, 7 years after we were awarded the games, Britain has finally arrived at the Opening Ceremony for the 30th Olympiad! This makes me incredibly excited, both because I am here to support my home nation (go Team GB, whoo!) but I am also set to go down and work in the Olympic Park next Sunday for a week. For anyone who doesn't know I work at the 'Official Restaurant of the Olympics' ahem, McDonald's ahem, and was selected to be part of the 1800 UK employees who competed to win their place in the squad to man the 4 restaurants in the Olympic park. I am incredibly excited to be involved in this once in a lifetime event, and feel proud to be supporting my home nation and my company!

That being said, I am off to live in London for a week and naturally need to begin thinking about what I am going to include in my suitcase. So, here's some of the products I'm planning on including in my travel make-up bag...

Benefit Beauty Bag £22.50
The bag itself is by Benefit, one of my all time favourite make-up brands, and when I received my first every payday from Macs, almost 2.5 years ago, I went straight to the Benefit counter and spent the lot. I love this bag, it's a lovely size, not too big, not too small yet you can fit a surprising amount into it. (This is the smaller of the two sizes that Benefit offers, the other one is more of a washbag.)

From left to right:

  • Benefit They're Real Mascara - My all time favourite mascara, honestly I cannot find any fault with this little tube other than the fact I need to pay for a new one soon as it's running out!

  • Nouveau Lashes Mascara - I got this in a Glossybox a while back and it's now one of my go to mascaras. 

  • MAC Zoom Lash Mascara - My mum gave this to me after finding that she didn't like it. I haven't really used it enough to decide if I like it or not, but it's MAC so hey!

  • Lancome Doll Eyes Mascara - My favourite high end mascara, I absolutely love the effect the wand gives to your lashes. 

  • Caudalie Vinosource Day Serum - Another beauty box goodie, I love the feel of this on my skin.

  • Good Things Miracle Mattifying Moisturiser - I absolutely love this brand, their products smell amazing and are a wonder and delight to use (proper blog post coming soon!).

  • Murad Face Primer - Something I'm not too keen on, but trying to use up. I think I got this in a Glossybox.

  • Benefit Playstick - Great solid to liquid type foundation in an easy-to-apply-and-transport stick. 

  • YSL Touche Eclat - Need I mention how amazing this wonderful pen is?!

  • Revlon Kissable Balm Stain 'Rendevous' - A fabulous orange colour, new from Revlon. 

  • Urban Decay Primer Potion - I'm trying this out in place of my beloved Benefit eyelid primer, not too sure yet!

  • Benefit Bad Gal Waterproof Eyeliner - Lots of Benefit love for this eyeliner, and it certainly doesn't come off when you cry! 

  • Soap & Glory Kohl Eyeliner - One of the softest, smoothest and most blend able eyeliners I have ever bought. £5.00 well spent. 

  • Rimmel Exaggerate Eyeliner - Believe it or not I bought this in Poundland and love the sky blue colour.

  • Physicians Formula Pearl Blush - I bought this from a blogsale to try before I jet off to Florida to buy the rest of my Physicians Formula shopping list. Lovely little blush. 

  • Look Beauty Flirty Flick Eyeliner - A good little eyeliner, but one I'm trying to use up. It's not got that great a staying power. 

  • Benefit Eye Bright - Can you tell I love Benefit yet? Dab this pencil in the corner of each eye for instant wide awake bright eye. 

  • L'Oreal Superliner - My favourite ever liquid eyeliner. L'Oreal have made this specifically for blue eyes so it compliments my eyes superbly.

Just a small example of how much you can fit in the Benefit Beauty Bags!!

As you can imagine I am counting down the days until the 5th of August when I get to arrive at the Olympic Park and find out what restaurant I am working in. If you would like to come and follow me on twitter (@louisekwilliams) you can keep up to date with all of my Olympic news.

Are you crazy for the Olympics? Or already over it? Tell me your thoughts!


Lush Bubblegum Lip Scrub

Hey team!

Lush is a shop that I always used to bypass in my local shopping centre, mainly due to the overpowering smells that waft out of the door. I always used to wonder how on earth the Lush employees could stand to work in such an environment, until one day I took a chance and decided to peek about. Lucky enough for me my nose got used to the smells and I managed to have a good sniff around, so to speak.

The idea of Lush products as being fresh and handmade is really what sells the brand to us, their customers. For me, one of their biggest selling points, besides their natural approach to cosmetics and beauty, is the fact that they do not test on animals whatsoever, and indeed have sparked many a controversial row of late with their striking and successful ad campaigns (yes, I'm talking about that live window display demonstration!). By the by, they have an impressive range of products for the bath, body, face, hair, and shower and which the recent introduction of their 'Emotional Brilliance' cosmetics range I thought I'd offer my thoughts on their bubblegum flavoured lip scrub.

Made from half naturally occurring ingredients, and half safe synthetics this little pot of neon pink granules is a 'perfectly pink polisher [that] keeps lips in tip top condition and tasting of candy floss' as labelled on the new packaging, and I have to agree entirely. The smell is sweet but not overbearing, the neon pink appeals to the crazy girl inside of me, and the after effects of the treatment on my lips makes them feel so smooth and soft! Due to the main ingredient being a natural castor sugar, this little pot of sugary goodness is entirely safe to consume, simple dip your finger in the jar, put your lips together and rub the granules all over your lips (if you can stand to actually 'scrub' like you would with a body scrub treatment in the shower then it makes your lips even smoother!) and once you're satisfied simply lick it off and ta-da, fabulously smooth, kissable lips!
(The sales lady even told me that if I wanted to just eat all of the product I could, but I think you'd end up feeling funny, so I told her I'd stick to using it for it's intended purpose!)

I like to use my lip scrub before applying lipstick as it creates that perfect smooth base for the colour to stay put, but isn't too harsh so as to draw out moisture. The lip scrub also contains natural jojoba oil to give you a moisture boost without feeling too greasy, so it's a perfect lip colour base for sure.

Priced at £5.25 for a 25g pot you might think that it's a little pricey, but remember that it's all handmade and a lot of the ingredients are natural so I think it's great value for money, especially for the benefits it provides for my lips!

I have to mention that this is currently the only product I own from Lush and while I love it so much I would like to try out other things that I might come to love just the same. So what are your favourite Lush products? Can you recommend any to me?


Instaweeks #3

Best drink ever!/Besties <3/Yummy/Cute pjs
Essie & Models Own/Back of iPad/Front of iPad/What's this, no rain?

Topshop jewels/Swatching Revlon's balm stains/Ink :D/Rekorderlig 4 lfy
It's my eye/freebies galore/Can anyone name this essie shade? It's not on the bottle/Gorgeous candle.

My duck face :')/Blue eyes and collar tips/Night of entertainment/Desk space in my new room
Starbucks/New house has a tv!!/Pudding/Mac's Tilt in pan form

Mac mascara, thanks Mummy!/So girlie/Oh hello!/Teeny choc
My boy <3/Reading magazines on my iPad/Toy Story marathon/Lush cupcake
A selection of pictures from the last 3 weeks of my life. I really ought to make this a weekly feature, I'm always on Instagram, love it so much!

Come along and follow me, search for: louisekwilliams
I'll even take a peek at your pics too :-)


Seven Successful Things

Hey team!

So I was looking back at recent bloggy posts and realised that I had completely forgotten to do my Seven Successful Things for May or June! If you're new to following me, hello, thank-you and welcome (!), this is a little series that I *will* be doing every month highlighting seven successful (in my opinion) events or moments in my life each month. I feel that too often people look upon themselves in such a negative light in regards to personal appearance, things that they might do at work, at home or in education etc and feel not good enough, like they don't fit into the preconceived mould of perfection. I know I have often, and definitely still do, feel like this, and although I am a perfectionist by nature and constantly want to better myself, I see no reason why we shouldn't all blow our own trumpets every now and again. We don't always have to look down on ourselves, there's too much negativity in the world as it is. So, that being said, I like to think back to the previous month and select seven things to share that have excited me, made me proud to be me or even just made me smile so that if ever I'm feeling rubbish I can look back to the month and say, actually, I achieved a lot. Onwards for June (forgive me, May was a while ago so I'll miss that one out).

  1. I completed all of my exams for my second year at university. This is an achievement in itself because I know of a few people who skipped out on some or opted not to sit them and just resit in the summer.
  2. I got a 2:1 as my overall grade for my second year - whoo!
  3. I bought an iPad as an easier way for me to keep connected to the world when I travel to the USA in September/when I travel to and from Devon to Durham. Naturally I wanted cute cover, see below!
  4. I received my travel tickets for going down to work at the Olympics. If you're down in London between the 5th and the 12th of August and come to eat at the McDonald's in the Olympic Park I might the girl on the till serving you :-)
  5. I got to go home for a few days, which is incredibly rare for me during the summer what with the price of train tickets and having to pay the rent. Love going to see my little family. 
  6. I managed to successfully pack up my room in my old student house and move into my new one. I arrived at uni with 2 suitcases. I now have 11 boxes and 2 suitcases worth of stuff...what even?
  7. I actually bought a bikini in an acceptable size. I haven't bought one in ages, or even managed to believe the mirror made me look ok in it, roll on September when I can wear it to the water parks.

Love my front and back covers, both purchased on eBay,
front was around £6 and the back was £9.99.
Have you done anything exciting/successful lately? If you fancy doing a post like this let me know and link me in it so I can have a peek at what you've been up to :-) 


Revlon - Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain in 'Rendevous'

Say hello to the new Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stain. Phew, bit of a mouthful eh? I like to think of this product as Clinique's Chubby Stick's friendly neighbour, a sort of dupe, but not as good. I own one Clinique Chubby Stick, in the shade '06 woppin' watermelon' which is a lovely pink colour, and although you can't help but compare these two products this is not what I intend to do today. There are obvious similarities, the packaging is almost identical, Revlon's balm stain is a bit longer, so you get a few more centimetres of product in the tube, both products have a twistable bottom to bring out more product (no need for a sharpener, I like this fact!) but apart from the lid being the same colour as the product in Revlon's offering (Clinique has a sleek silver lid to match the base) the packaging is incredibly similar. But I kind of like this, don't fix what ain't broke for someone else, eh?

I went a bit mad when I chose my colour in Boots the other day. I always seem to stick to pale pinks of nudes on my lips and because I have such a small mouth that I always find that incredible pops of colour look funny on my face. However, I don't own anything in the orange spectrum and this is exactly what Revlon's 040 Rendezvous is - Louise is taking the plunge! I do love the colour, the payoff is amazing and so long lasting. I think the fact that these lip products are advertised as a 'balm stain' on their packaging really helps to reassure you that the slight orange tint left on your lips when you remove the bulk of the product is supposed to be there. That's what I tell myself anyway. I swatched all of the colours on my hand in the store and they all had pretty good staying power, so just because the colour of this particular lip crayon is a bright orange doesn't mean that the pale pinks will wear off really quickly. (I think I'll buy one of those and see if that's true!)

 If there's one thing I really do not like about this product then it's the smell. Smell is very important for me in cosmetics and skincare, I know that's it's not a major factor in seeing whether or not the product works on your face/hair/eyes/skin/lips etc but if the product doesn't smell nice then I won't enjoy using it. Anyone else have this issue? (I know, I'm strange!) To me Revlon's balm stain smells like old chewing gum, it sort of has a musty mint smell which lingers when I put it on my lips. I don't know if it's just this colour, or if they all have the same smell, again I need to get another one to test (such a self-enabler!) Apart from the smell, I love the idea of using a lip crayon that has multiple benefits in one. When everyone went crazy (myself included) for Revlon's lip butters I wondered if they would use this concept in any future products and I am glad to see they have. The Kissable Balm Stains are moisturising whilst retaining the necessary components that enable it to be called a lipstick in my opinion - fab pigmentation and staying power. Revlon, once again you've impressed me. Now please, just get rid of the smell!

Currently on an introductory offer of £5.99 each in Boots, usual RRP £7.99.

Have you tried any of the Revlon Just Bitten Kissable Balm Stains? What are your thoughts?


Room Tour #2

View from the doorway.
Cozy bed :-)
Beauty shelf <3

Beauty window shelf <3
I'm excited for this post because it marks the beginning of this next academic year, which some people may find odd as the last one has only just finished. However, there were aspects of last year that I really wanted to leave behind in my old room, so as they say, onwards and upwards! (For anyone who doesn't know, I have just finished my 2nd year at university, 1 more to go and then I am free!)
I love everything about this room apart from the furniture and the blue walls. Why, oh why could the landlord not have left them white?! And what is with the hideous wardrobe door colour? I am on the hunt for cute cards and posters etc to stick over the doors!

Anyhow, I now live in an old Methodist Chapel, which was built in the 1850s and as such the walls are super thick (look at how deep the window is!) and the brickwork is quaint and lovely. It's such a nice house, and one of the best parts about it is the fact that it comes with a TV. Honestly, I have no idea what I did with my time in the old house!
I've decorated much to my girly, fluffy, sparkly style, so much so that my housemate commented on how much she thought it was pretty and cozy - whoo! I think the best feature has got to be the beauty shelves ;-) I think all the pictures speak for themselves, I do love this room!

Blog Hop!

Hey team!

I followed my first ever blog hop today so if you're reading this having just found my little corner of cyber space, hello! *waves*.

Beauty Bloggers Unite are hosting another of their successful blog hop events whereby you add the link to you blog, follow a whole bunch of lovely lovely blogs and keep on discovering new and exciting people to read with.

You can find the post explaining everything here. Go on and check it out!



 I'm going to have to get my ark out of hiding in a minute. No seriously, how many days rain has the UK had now? Where I currently am, in County Durham in the North East, has not seen a day's sunshine for weeks! I fear that the floods that forced the animals aboard the wooden vessel will return and force me to forever walk around in my wellies. Which would be ok, apart from the fact that they're a tad uncomfortable around my calves (damn you fat legs!!).

Anyway, I wanted to inject a little bit of pastel spring into my wardrobe today. I might be a bit late with the trend considering it's all now in the sales but I went into the city yesterday after my annual trip to Ikea fell through and bought this gorgeous crochet type top from River Island in the sale for a tenner. I spied it in the Metrocentre in Gateshead a while ago and something made me put it back on the shelf, but alas when it gets £15-£20 knocked off it's price how can I resist?! Due to it's incredibly hole-y nature I have paired it with a simple white cami top from Primark for £2. I simply adore Primark for their selection of affordable simple tops and tees. (*Top Tip* I bought my cami in a massive size because Primark has a knack of making the bigger sizes longer. This means that I can comfortably wearing my long camis over leggings as they cover my behind and there's no need for a skirt. And their cami's are incredibly stretchy so there's no danger of the top being baggy or bunching in the wrong places. So yeah, if you want a longer top, buy big! *Top Tip*)
My leggings are actually a sky blue, more than a grey/blue as the camera has picked up. They're from Topshop and were definitely from the Tall section as they're massive! I'm no short lady (5'8 right here!) but they're so long, but oh so comfortable. I believe they were around the £20 mark.

All I can say is that if the weather stays like this, then pass my my knitwear. Is there any point in teaming a pretty summer dress with tights and a cardi?

Postscript: Here's a cheeky little shot of my latest tattoo poking out :-) It's fully healed now and makes my total tattoo count to 2!


Haulin' #1

L-R: Black shoes - New Look, £7.99
Rainbow Bikini - Primark, £5 for the top, £3.00 for the bottoms
Collar tipped top - Primark, £6.00
Dotty shoes - Primark £3.00 in the sale
Make-up bag - Primark, £2.00
Pink feather earrings - Primark, £3.00
Hello everyone :-)
Guess who's managed to finally make an appearance after two incredibly busy weeks of packing, storage, unpacking, going home, moving house, going to work, and sleeping! Sorry little blog :'(
I have here a little Primark haul from when I was back in Plymouth, this is not everything mind, I went back to Primark the next day and picked up the top with the collar tips in another colour (I both love and hate Primark for enabling me to buy a nice item in every single colour possible!).
The biggest bargain was the sandals, perfect for my holiday (8 weeks to go) and at £3 down from £6 I couldn't leave them on the shelf could I?! I also adore the fact that Primark have bikini bottoms and tops to purchase separately, like many girls I am most definitely two different sizes on top and bottom so it's refreshing to not have to panic too much about squeezing your chest into a size 14 top when really you need to be a big larger upstairs...

Pretty little collar tips.
In other news, I am all settled in to my new student house, room tour to follow. One of the best features about it is that it comes with a free view TV included in the rent so I can finally watch programmes in real time without worrying about the internet crashing watching iPlayer or 4OD - hurrah!

Have you found any bargains lately? I know there are a lot of sales happening at the moment but I'm trying to be good and save my pennies for America!