December Favourites 2018

December has been another fast paced month! I’m settling in to my job and I have been able to read a little bit more. I get a one hour lunch break so I take my book and get to read it most days. We’re keeping Christmas lowkey this year and it’s nice not to have to worry and enjoy the time off I get. December has had some really special moments and I’m ending the year on a high. I feel a lot better mentally and I’m hoping 2019 will bring more joy!

Onto this month’s favourites:

1. Rita Ora – Phoenix – I have listened to Rita’s music for a number of years and I was happy to get my hands on her long awaited second album last week. I tried to pick up the album earlier but there’s only one shop that sells CDs in my city and they didn’t have it so I had to wait until I went to Auckland for the Shania Twain concert. This album is catchy pop with an emotional R&B edge. Phoenix sounds current and the majority of tracks would not be out of place on radio. Standout Tracks: Anywhere, Lonely Together, Only Want You, For You and Cashmere.

2. Daniel Wellington Petite Melrose Watch + Cuff Set – Whilst I love having small wrists it makes buying watches difficult. The best thing about this watch is that the clasp can be moved to suit a range of wrist sizes. It’s also useful if your wrist size fluctuates. I was drawn to the Petite Melrose because of the rose gold colour and how dainty and elegant the watch looked. The watch face comes in two different sizes (28mm and 32mm – for reference I got the 28mm) and you can also choose the colour of the face: white or black. The black looks striking but I chose white as it looks more classic. The watch straps can also be swapped out so if you don’t want to have more than one watch you can change the strap for a different look. If you don’t want to order a cuff with your watch you can order a second strap or simply buy the watch on it’s own. This is the nicest watch I have ever owned – it’s the perfect fit and so lightweight to wear.

3. Shania Twain concert – December 18th 2018 is a day I’ll never forget; the day I got to see Shania Twain in concert. I have been a fan since 1998 and I never thought all these years later I would get to see her live, let alone have her touch my hand as she made her way to the stage. Shania is one of my biggest inspirations, her life story is so interesting and she’s had her share of ups and downs. The show itself was spectacular, the band are talented and Shania is such a professional, she knows how to work the stage and the crowd and treats her songs with respect. She doesn’t oversing or try and create new versions of the hits she’s known for. I was up singing and dancing all night and I feel blessed to have been in the same room as her.

4. Rimmel 107 Lipstick – I wore this to the Shania Twain concert and my love for this shade has been reignited. This lipstick has been in my collection for a few years now and I really should wear it more. The lipstick is pigmented, easy to apply and lasts well throughout the day. 107 is a gorgeous berry red and one of the best reds I own. This lipstick is lovely all year round but it’s especially beautiful around Christmas!

December’s Spotify Playlist:


What were your favourite things in December?

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Shania Twain Concert Makeup

Today is the day I get to see Shania Twain in concert, and not only that but it’s her FIRST EVER concert in New Zealand! I became a fan when I was three years old and heard ‘From This Moment On.’ To be able to say I’ve seen Shania will be an absolute dream come true. Not only does she have a beautiful voice and incredible song writing ability, her story is one of strength and grace. Her life hasn’t always been easy but she refuses to give up and she continues to succeed.

Choosing an outfit for the concert was easy. I opted for my Shania Now album cover t-shirt with a pair of black leggings. Casual and comfy but concert appropriate.

Makeup wise I wanted to do a Shania-esque look so I drew inspiration from two of her music videos. I incorporated a berry red lip from ‘That Don’t Impress Me Much’ and a dark smoky eye from ‘I’m Gonna Getcha Good.’

Products listed in order:

1. Olay Complete UV Lotion Sensitive – This moisturiser works really well with my current primer and skincare routine. It soaks in quickly without leaving my skin dry or greasy.

2. Too Faced Hangover Primer – I like this primer and ever since I started using it my makeup has looked really nice.

3. Rimmel Professional Brow Pencil in 002 Hazel – Even with this being as small as it is it still applies how it always has.

4. Max Factor Lasting Finish Foundation in 100 Fair – When I want a flawless finish and good coverage this is my foundation of choice! I previously used this in 101 Ivory Beige, but think this shade is the better match out of the two.

5. Urban Decay Primer Potion – I want my eye makeup to last the night so this was a no brainer.

6. Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer – 1 Fair – I used this concealer rather my MAC one as it’s easier to reapply without ruining the base underneath.

7. The Body Shop Honey Bronzer in 01 Light Matte – I like to use a light dusting of bronzer to act sort of like a setting powder and take off any major shine. I apply bronzer to the tops of my cheeks, my chin, my temples and in a ‘w’ shape over my cheeks and nose.

8. Makeup Revolution Iconic 1 Palette – I did a makeup trial the Saturday before the concert using my Zoeva Cocoa Blend Voyager Palette and the black shade from my Shaaanxo palette but the eyes weren’t intense and dark enough for my liking. I loved the Halloween eye makeup I did *HERE* so I decided to recreate that look on concert night.

9. MAC Silver Pigment – I used a short shadow brush to place the pigment on the inner corner of the eyes. I just wanted a small pop of shimmer so the dark, smokiness could shine through.

10. Rimmel Scandaleyes Lycra Flex Mascara – My holy grail mascara! The large wand on this mascara means more lashes get coated at a time and the wand is really good for bottom lashes. One coat on the bottom lashes is enough otherwise I find they detract from the top lashes.

11. NARS Mini Orgasm Blush Highlight Duo – This blush goes with any look and the highlighting shade in the duo is the perfect accompaniment. I chose this product as it’s easy to travel with and contains blush and highlighter rather than having to pack two separate products.

12. Rimmel 107 Lipstick – A red lip is always a good idea and this one from Rimmel is not only similar to the colour Shania wears in the video for ‘That Don’t Impress Me Much’ but it’s also festive and looks great with leggings and a white tee!

The Finished Look:


Who is one artist you’d love to see in concert?

What do you think of my concert makeup?

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Life Changing Experiences

If you’re not an adrenaline junkie or a thrill seeker it’s easy to get labelled as boring or an introvert. While the majority of the time I would describe myself as the latter two, there have been moments I’ve surprised myself and made ‘big’ decisions. We all have experiences that shape us into who we are, they may not always be good but they all teach us a lesson. If you want to learn about some of the things that have changed me, keep reading!

1. Growing up without my dad

Unconsciously I think living without my dad influences so much of what I do and the decisions I make. I didn’t have experience with boys and relationships with them growing up and that includes my dad. I wonder if that sense of not being important and not feeling wanted stems from this. Whenever I think of my dad I get emotional. When he left I was heartbroken but as time went on I learned to live without him and now I know life was better without him. I’m not a bitter person but I don’t know if I can forgive him for the upset and the emotional damage. My dad doesn’t know my hobbies, my favourite colour, how I did at school or most things about my life. I’m independent and I’m tough and that’s because of him and I’m proud of that. The line in Grease about the only man a girl can depend on is her daddy isn’t always true.

2. Meeting my boyfriend

As a child and at school I was always inexperienced with the male sex. I grew up with my brother but I didn’t have friends that were boys and I had no clue how to talk to them. I hoped one day I would meet someone and I am glad I didn’t put any pressure on myself and it happened naturally. A couple of days before writing this post my boyfriend was talking about fate and I still find it amusing that out of all the people I could have met I met a Brit! I feel like no one gets us except us and we have this beautiful understanding of each other. I don’t feel pressured to be a certain way and whenever I see him I feel free and at ease. Meeting him has given me more confidence, I’m not sure if it’s a sense of belonging and ‘fitting in’ or just experiencing new things and having someone to get to know.

3. Jobs and work

Work can be a tough topic to talk about. I think it’s fair to say we all have an idea what our dream job would be but for some of us we aren’t in that dream job. When I got my first job as a pharmacy assistant I was so proud to have landed a position after job searching for 18 months following my Communications course. I had that job for roughly a year before the pharmacy ownership changed hands and I was let go. At the time I was upset and distraught as I hadn’t done anything wrong and it came unexpectedly out of the blue. My attitude actually became more positive and during the few months that followed leaving the pharmacy I was happy and I found my second job. I made the decision to leave my second job in August 2017 because my head wasn’t in the best place and I had been experiencing anxiety. I am pleased to say I haven’t experienced anxiety again on that level and I am in a better place. I still have down days but not as many. I know what to look for now and I wouldn’t put myself through that again.

4. Singing at a school talent quest

People know I sing and I enjoy it but I don’t actually do it in front of people often. (My mum and cat are privileged as they get private concerts 😛 ) When I was 14 I took the plunge and entered a school talent quest. Some of the school students knew I could sing and they encouraged me to do it. I sang ‘Issues’ by The Saturdays and I surprised myself with how un-nervous I was. Singing for people you don’t know is easier than singing for those you know well because their opinions matter more. By doing that talent quest I proved to myself I’m more than just a girl who sits in her bedroom singing.

5. Going to my first concert

If you know me well you know music is my biggest love. It’s comforting to know it’s always there and it helps and brings pleasure to so many people. I attended my first proper concert when I was 19 (I saw Ellie Goulding) and I still remember how excited I was and how elated I was the whole night. That feeling doesn’t happen for me very often it’s not one I ever want to forget. For those two hours I was in another place full of happiness and no one can take that away from me or ruin it. I want to be a singer one day and it would bring me joy to know I could be that escape for someone too.


What has impacted/changed your life – good or bad?

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Redhead Rambles #7

Hello everyone and welcome to ‘Redhead Rambles’. The series does what it says on the tin, it is a redhead (me) rambling about her week. I share what I’ve been up to each week, how I’ve been feeling and what I’ve been listening to or watching. Occasionally I will my share favourite blog posts and links I’ve found useful or interesting.

  • I GOT SHANIA TWAIN TICKETS! General sale for Shania’s NZ shows took place last Friday and after being unsuccesful in the pre-sales, I managed to snag decent tickets! I will be sitting in Row 15 which means there’s only 14 rows of people between me and Shania. (I previously had Row 8 which would have been even closer but I accidentally clicked and lost those tickets).
  • I even wore my Shania t-shirt to buy the tickets 😛
  • It was a very wet weekend.
  • I watched the final of Pretty Little Liars. The final was not what I expected and it has still left me questioning who A really is and if the character they’re suggesting is A or not. I am sad it’s over, it has been one of my favourite shows for the past six years.
  • I’ve been loving Morphe’s Copper Spice palette this week and it is pretty much all I’ve used on my eyes.
  • I am trying to make even healthier food choices and picked up some different things in the weekly shop. I picked up some cashews, and ingredients to make smoothies.
  • I have been incorporating more exercise into my day; 50 squats, 20 lunges, 20 toe touches, 30 second plank, 20 leg lifts (10 each side) and 20 butt kicks.
  • My skin hasn’t been as dry because the weather hasn’t been as hot.
  • I painted my nails using Revlon’s Mon Cherry. I chose red for Valentine’s Day.
  • I’ve always wanted to try mini golf so I suggested to my boyfriend that we have a game as part of our Valentine’s celebrations.
  • My ASOS order arrived. I purchased a denim jacket and a grey, fluffy twosie. (I have linked the denim jacket but the twosie is out of stock). The twosie is cuddly and soft and designed as loungewear. The jacket fits well around my waist but is slightly big in the shoulders and arms. Once I get layers under the jacket it should be fine and if I ordered a smaller size the arms would fit but then it may not fit as well around the waist.

What I’ve been listening to:

Shania Twain – Still the One: Live From Vegas – In celebration of getting tickets to see Shania I sang along to her live album from when she did her Las Vegas residency. I’ve dreamt about seeing Shania in concert for years and this will be a dream come true.

Best of Kylie – Kylie Minogue is hands down one of my all time favourite pop stars. Her career has spanned three decades and this playlist incorporates all her best tracks and sing-a-long hits!

How was your week?

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October Favourites 2016

october-favourites-2016

Here we are at the end of another month already! It has been another busy one and again it has been filled with lots of positivity and smiles! I haven’t purchased a lot of makeup and beauty bits over the past few months and there’s no beauty products in this post. I’ve really been enjoying rediscovering products again and coming up with different makeup looks and combinations. I am doing extremely well with my lip product buying ban as well, it’s been almost two months and I haven’t caved!

Onto this month’s favourites:

1. Ellie Goulding Delirium World Tour – October got off to an incredible start when I saw Ellie Goulding in concert on the very first day of the month. I had had my ticket for seven months and I was super excited to see Ellie again. I saw her when she was last here in June 2014 and this time was even better! The visuals and the lighting were so well done and Ellie looked absolutely beautiful in her outfits. (At the last concert there were no outfit changes). The atmosphere was electric and I enjoyed every minute! I also bought a t-shirt with tour dates on the back as a keepsake.

2. After You – Jojo Moyes* – After You is the follow up novel to Me Before You which featured in last month’s favourites. I borrowed the book from one of my work colleagues and finished it a lot quicker than the prequel. Like last month I won’t spoil the book and the plot if you haven’t read it yet and you want to but I will say After You seems slightly more action packed than Me Before You and more characters are introduced. I hope this novel is made into a film as well!

Note: I watched Me Before You last week and I really liked it. It moves faster than the book and is a bit different but there is lots of sarcastic, dry humour which made me laugh. I didn’t cry when I read the book and I almost made it through the film without crying. The credits were rolling and I started thinking about the storyline and I ended up having a little cry.

*The book doesn’t feature in the image as I have given it back to my work colleague.

3. ASOS Textured Striped Dial Watch – I haven’t had this watch very long (a matter of days) but I am in love! I have been after a stylish, rose gold watch for a couple of months and I finally decided on this one. My wrists are the size of a child’s, possibly even smaller, and it’s so difficult to find a watch that fits. This one from ASOS is stunning, the face isn’t huge and doesn’t take over my wrist. I don’t even have to wear the watch at it’s tightest – even though I might be able to get away with it.

4. kikki.K Mindful Colouring Book – My mum bought this colouring book for me when we were in Auckland at the beginning of the month but it’s only within the past week that I’ve opened it up and started colouring. I know adult colouring has become popular over the past couple of years and I’ve wanted a colouring book for ages but a lot of the books seem thick and the patterns look so intricate and confusing but this one is a handy size. I bought a pack of fine liner pens to colour with.

October’s Spotify Playlist:

This playlist is all upbeat and has a feel good pop/dance vibe to it. A beat is what draws me in to a song and I enjoy nothing more than music I can sing and dance along to.

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Review: Ellie Goulding – Vector Arena (07/06/2014)

Ellie Goulding at Vector Arena

Setlist:

1. Figure 8
2. Ritual
3. Goodness Gracious
4. Animal
5. Starry Eyed
6. Stay Awake
7. Tessellate/Life Round Here
8. Guns and Horses (Acoustic)
9. Beating Heart (Acoustic)
10. Your Song
11. The Writer
12. Explosions
13. My Blood
14. Bad Girls/Salt Skin
15. Only You
16. Everytime You Go/This Love (Will Be Your Downfall)
17. Anything Could Happen
18. I Need Your Love
19. Lights
20. You, My Everything
21. Burn

The Halcyon Days Tour marked Ellie’s second visit to New Zealand, kicking off at Vector Arena in Auckland. From the get go the visuals, vocals, band and atmosphere were electric.

Ellie’s simple outfit consisted of a white long-sleeved crop top, black harem pants and Doc Martens boots. She proved she doesn’t need numerous costume changes and scantily clad backing dancers to put on a good show. Her voice really shone through and her soft tones never felt like she was trying to hard or screaming. After such an energetic opening the acoustic section was a genius inclusion and showcased Ellie’s musicality and guitar playing skills. Throughout the show Ellie told the audience little anecdotes about her songs and how grateful she was to be playing to such a “huge crowd”.

‘Anything Could Happen’ felt like a real turning point in the show, the whole arena was dancing and singing and Ellie demonstrating her running man was adorable! ‘Lights’ was another magical moment, the whole arena was lit up with lights from phones and cameras and looked absolutely beautiful. ‘Burn’ was the final song of the night and a great way to end the show. The lyrics really resonated with me as she sang them. As a fan of Ellie since 2010 it was surreal to reflect on the evening and her success. I couldn’t believe that four years ago I was listening to her first album in my bedroom and in this moment I was in the same room as her.

Overall, the night was fantastic and this was actually my first EVER concert! Ellie definitely didn’t disappoint. Her live vocals are just as good as they are recorded and the fact she’s so humble is what makes her a true star.