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Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Summer Reads | with Holiday Gems

Reading has always been a big part of my life and I got pretty down in the dumps when I stopped reading at university. My social life sort of took over and I no longer had any free time to sit down and read a book that wasn't part of my degree. Since working a full-time job at Penguin Random House and now at my new job, I've managed to juggle successfully a healthy reading schedule and of course the odd Netflix binge every couple of weeks.
Books
So when I was asked by Holiday Gems to pull together some new reads for Summer, I was more than happy to oblige. Armed with my Amazon credit, I had already decided on two books that I wanted. The rest are typically crime/thriller novels (no surprise as I love anything crime related) but all by new readers who I haven't heard of before.


No Filter by Grace Victory - Buy here


No Filter Book
She's a blogger/vlogger who doesn't gives a shit about what the haters think and she openly speaks her mind with grace (no pun intended) and confidence. I've been following her for a while now on Twitter and I am obsessed with all her looks, celebrating her body and never holding back. I was really excited for this girl to have her own book out and much like the rest of the digital community, we support one of our own.  No Filter is an honest and fun insight into tackling the problems that all young people tend to face. With so much pressure to act a certain way or to be like everyone else, it's great for the younger generation to see someone talk about going through it and coming out the other side. I'm so excited to get stuck into this book. 


Wilde Like Me by Louise Pentland - Buy here


Wilde Like Me Book
Another book, another blogger. Louise Pentland is one of the more mainstream bloggers that a lot of people will know of. She's caught the attention of the media not just because of being close friends with Zoella but because she's a hilarious mum with a beautiful heart. It seems like Wilde Like Me definitely has similarities to Louise's own life and whether that's true for her, who knows! I love how Louise has gone for a fictional angle rather than do a biography or a book that's just been copied. It's creative, it's different and it's one I'm looking forward to reading.


He Said, She Said by Erin Kelly - Buy here


He Said, She Said Book
When it came to choosing the other books, I looked into what was on the top sellers list. I really do love crime novels, they are by far my favourite genre to read. It's Erin's sixth book and the positive reviews are what drew me to the book.  The story focuses on an alleged rape that took place which a character called Laura witnesses. This has a devastating effect on her future where she has no choice but to go into hiding. It's a very interesting angle to approach, where the witness seems to become the victim so I'm very excited to learn more. This is a book that I feel is going to be read within one or two sittings.


The Girl Friend by Michelle Frances - Buy here


The Girlfriend Book
When it has the tag line 'She loves your son, she wants your life', I'm thinking oh god yes, some psychopathic, crazy partner stuff is about to go down in this one. This is Michelle's first novel which makes it all the more exciting for the author herself. A mother who seems to have it all is suddenly in for a rude awakening when her son brings home a girl named Cherry. Not used to the upbringing that her son has had, Cherry is keen to be welcomed with open arms. It's a meet the family situation that we can all relate to but this isn't no ordinary situation. OMG. So much excitement.

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena - Buy here

The Couple Next Door Book
This is the first one that I've actually started reading since finishing my last book. I always find that I need to take a short break after reading a book, just so I can acknowledge that those character's stories have finished and that I'm beginning another otherwise I end up missing the characters from the previous book. I know, it's strange.

The Couple Next Door is definitely a thriller. A baby is taken from it's cot whilst the parents are at a dinner party next door. It's premise is much like what we've seen in our own realities and I'm immediately gripped. I can't wait to find out what happens and I feel as though this will be a story with many twists and turns in it. It's Shari's first debut but she already has another one coming out. This woman works fast!

What books have you read lately? Do any of these look good to you? Let me know in the comments below. Also, if you're planning on a last minute holiday like I am, check out these last minute deals.

*Disclaimer - I was gifted an Amazon Gift card in return for this post. All words are my own. This post contains affiliate links.


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Monday, 21 August 2017

Highs & Lows | Week 17

This week was all about family and it was my eldest brother's 21st birthday. I can't actually believe that one of my siblings is already 21. It's SO SCARY.

We celebrated his birthday with family and friends at a local pub in our hometown. It was a great night and as my brother was heading over to Amsterdam for the weekend, it was a good send off!

Redman Family

Highs ↑


Ashley turns 21


I can't believe one of my baby brothers is now an adult. I've realised that time goes by so quickly and I have to savour every moment I get with my family because of living in London. I have a very close bond with my family and I'm forever grateful for the support they have given me over the years. I hope Ashley enjoyed his birthday!

Shopping Till Dropping


I went to Stratford on Saturday to spend some of my hard-earned blogging cash on some new clothes. I actually prefer Westfields Stratford to Oxford Street because there's a lot more shops there and it isn't so crowded. I ended up spending a little over £100 which I was actually pleasantly surprised by. With plenty of Summer sales on, I managed to get some bargains!

Lows ↓


Weekends are too short


Why are the weekends so short?! The past few weekends have gone by so quickly and I think it's because I'm desperately due a Summer holiday. With our holiday not really scheduled until October, I'm getting the itch!

Missing Sam


So Sam has been up in Edinburgh this week for the Fringe Festival. I've always wanted to go and I think I'll definitely be going next year. It's certainly been difficult not seeing him for 4-5 days particularly when we have lived together for so long.

Let me know what you've been up to in the comments below!


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Friday, 18 August 2017

Lottie London | Shimmer Squad

Having always walked past this brand numerous times in store, it wasn't until I saw this highlighter palette on another beauty blog that I said to myself 'I'm getting that palette the next time I'm in Superdrug'. And I did just that. Lottie London has always caught my eye due to it's colourful packaging, especially it's makeup brushes. As a recent collector of highlighters, I've started to branch out more and test those brands that I've always been too money conscious to buy.
Shimmer Palette Packaging
And I mean, I'm earning money from my blog so it only seems right to reinvest it into buying products that maybe my readers might like. The Lottie London Shimmer Squad Palette comes in four very different shades and costs £9.95. With each pan being just under £2.50, that's pretty good value for money. The pay off on each shade is incredible and is probably the best shadow highlighter I've ever bought. It beats the Sleek Summer Solstice Palette as this one is more suited to my skin tone and i's warmer than the Sleek shades.
Inside packaging
Since buying the palette, I've been reaching for The Good Girl and The Trouble Maker. I'm a little unsure as to whether The Flirt is a little too dark for my skin tone. I think it will work well though once I have a tan. The staying power of the powders are pretty good but I think using a setting spray locks it in for longer. Without further ado, let's take a look at each one individually...

The Good Girl


The Good Girl is very similar to The Queen Bee, as both are a golden shade. This one is a little colder though with brown under tones. I love wearing this on my cheek bones as it shows up pretty well. It's not too dark so it's the perfect match for my pale skin.

The Flirt


This one is the darkest shade and is like a brown bronzer. I'm tempted to use this on top of my contouring because at the moment it's just too dark for my pale skin. GOD DAMN IT.

The Troublemaker


I LOVE THIS SHADE. It's icy white and it's perfect for my alien pale skin. I'm so excited to use this around the festive period because it's reminds me of frost and delicious baked goods. I'm going to look like a star for Christmas 2017. Bring it on! I also love using this down the centre of my nose and on my cupid's bow. 

The Queen Bee


The Queen Bee is my favourite and not just because the shade name is amazing but the pigment is a perfect golden bronze. It's slightly warmer than The Good Girl and I find it gives me a more healthier glow over my foundation. 
swatches of highlighter
The pans are very pigmented and the swatches below are from just one swipe of my finger. I actually prefer applying highlighter with my Real Techniques Setting Brush as it's packed bristles pick up the product really well whilst still distributing it evenly. It's a shadow highlighter but it does feel a tad creamy which I love as it helps with gliding onto the skin. I've not actually tried any of these over my lips (top tip if you want to give your lipstick a bit more of a pop) but from just looking at the shades, I think The Trouble Maker would look great over Red and so would The Queen Bee.

What do you think of Lottie London? Are there any brands you'd like me to try out? Let me know in the comments below.



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Thursday, 17 August 2017

Globenfeld Watches

Ever since I started blogging, I've been surprised by how many brands are keen to use bloggers to promote their products. I'm always super grateful to be receiving such beautiful gifts to review as well as actually receiving payment for writing posts! #proudmoment

My partner Sam has always reaped the benefits of any products I may receive that are more suited for him. This also goes for all the events I've dragged him along to, which has turned him into quite the professional photographer. He's always said the one thing he'd love to get is a watch and that day HAS ARRIVED MY FRIENDS!
Packaging
Globenfeld is not actually a brand of watch that I'm familiar with but it has been around since the early to mid 1900's. Founded by Marcus Globenfeld, the company produces fine timepieces that are both fashionable and practical

'The new Globenfeld range echoes this desire with models specifically designed for the fashion conscious and sports oriented people of today, people who are equally at home whether in the boardroom or on the sports field.' - from the Globenfeld website.

We got a model from their Automatic range which has an RRP of £199. Amazon are actually doing an incredible deal, cutting the price to just £79.99. I'm not sure when this price reduction will disappear but it's a pretty good steal.
Watch on wrist
Watch in box
The automatic movement has been used by watch makers since the 18th century to produce some of the most expensive and finest timepieces in the world.

The dial is a texture white with a regal blue shade for the hands. With a silver casing and tobacco brown strap, this watch certainly screams sophisticated man. Whether you can say the same for my partner though is another story...

We've had a slight problem with the battery though as it has suddenly stopped working. This may be just part of a bad batch but the response time to get a new one has been great so fingers crossed it was just that particular one that's faulty.

What do you think of Globenfeld? Let me know in the comments below.

*Disclaimer - I received this watch in return for my own honest opinion, All words are my own. This post contains affiliate links.



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Wednesday, 16 August 2017

The Shows I'm Waiting For | Netflix

There has been so much content on Netflix over the past twelve months that has kept me hooked and has made binge watching become a bit of a norm in my life. With Love Island well and truly over, I thought to myself the other day about just how many series that I've watched and which ones I'm waiting to come back on. There's so many that I thought I'd put them all into a post for you!
Laptop with Netflix on

RuPaul's Drag Race


I know, I know. If you are as obsessed with RuPaul as I am, you'll know that Season 9 has only just been and gone and this season was probably the best one yet. With the appearance of Lady Gaga impersonating HERSELF - Qween. I made sure to tune into the episode as soon as it appeared on Netflix. I'm already looking forward to the next season because this show has all the best sayings that I love repeating in real life. If you can't love yourself, how the hell you going to love somebody else?!

The OA


A young blind woman disappears and then reappears seven years later cured of her blindness and convinced she has mystery powers. It's an incredibly powerful series that leaves you with a lot of unanswered questions about whether some of it is true or whether it's all been made up in her head. For me, I watched this straight after Stranger Things so it was a suitable replacement to cater to the eeriness of that show. I'm not quite sure whether there's going to be another series but it seems to be the case from looking online so good times!

Stranger Things


Urgh, I can't begin to tell you how impatient I am for Season 2 of Stranger Things. Set in the 1980s, this alien-esque thriller series had me gripped from the first episode. The kids in it are incredibly talented and the dated set and costume design is done so well. Season 2 is not due to come out until October, in time for Halloween but fans can see the latest trailer online! Literally cannot wait.

GLOW


It's a series that I've only recently binge watched after downloading the full series and watching it within a week of my commutes to and from work. GLOW is a story about a group of women who become female wrestlers and the first of their kind during that time. Based on a true story, the series focuses on each woman, giving them all a chance to shine as they train to become gorgeous ladies of wrestling (GLOW). It's witty, pretty funny and is certainly empowering to see a majority female cast.

Gilmore Girls


Now I'm not quite sure whether this is going ahead or not but I really hope to see another season of Gilmore Girls. I managed to watch all seven seasons in a very short time, much to the surprise of my best friend Hannah who introduced me to it. I then watched the latest one and was a little annoyed by the ending. I didn't really think it was in the character's nature and was pretty predictable. I hope that they bring back another season just so they can make up for the fact they ruined that last episode!

13 Reasons Why


It's a series that's divided the viewers, with some saying they love it and some saying it glorified suicide. For me, I loved it. There's never really been a show that's been focused solely on the topic of suicide that has been done so well before. If you haven't watched it, it's about a girl called Hannah Baker who commits suicide and has recorded 13 tapes which tells the listener, reasons why she killed herself. Each tape corresponds with a certain incident or person that contributed to her decision.

It's very difficult to watch at times and I couldn't bring myself to watch the moment she kills herself because you've been through this entire emotional journey with the character. I thought it was certainly thought-provoking and in no way did it glorify suicide. Suicide is one of those taboo topics that quite a few people still think is the 'easy way' or the 'coward's way out'. We never really know what a person is going through and how to spot those signs of depression or struggle that may make someone think that suicide is the only option. I think people's anger towards the show has been mixed because it is a difficult subject to approach. I'm looking forward to Season 2 because it's going to tackle the aftermath of the discovery of the tapes and what the knock on effect is for the rest of the students/people involved.

Riverdale


It's like Pretty Little Liars meets Gossip Girl which at times being sightly cringey, it's pretty addictive. The story begins with the murder of Jason Blossom, a rich kid who mysteriously vanishes after taking a boat trip with his sister. Secrets begin to unravel and it's one of those plots where you don't see the big twist coming. It also stars Cole Sprouse who is one of the twin brothers of the suite life of Zac and Cody. Let's just say he's certainly grown into his looks! HAWT.

Are you as obsessed with Netflix as I am? Let me know what you're watching at the moment in the comments below!


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