Hello 2020!

Happy New Year lovely readers! I hope you all had a relaxing holiday season and have enjoyed the first days of January so far.

I had a quiet Christmas which I don’t mind as the day feels peaceful and relaxing. I don’t have a big immediate family so there’s nowhere to travel and there aren’t people to visit but my brother came to stay with mum and I for a week. On Christmas Day we all had a nice meal and I spent the afternoon watching a documentary about Michael Hutchence – I find music documentaries fascinating and this one was poignant and touching. The next day I went shopping and picked up everything on my list. Shops weren’t as busy as I expected either which was a nice surprise. As I have been working through the Christmas/New Year period I’m hoping to take some leave at the end of January around my birthday and have a break then.

I’m coming in to 2020 excited about blogging. I’ve got a few post ideas up my sleeve and I’m going to adopt a similar posting style to last year, posting and writing when I’m in the mood and inspiration strikes. Looking back over the most popular posts from 2019 the clear winners are haul posts and monthly favourites. There won’t be any major changes to the blog overall and I’m enjoying a more relaxed approach.

I’m not sure what 2020 will bring but there’s something refreshing about that and being able to let things happen as they come and be in the moment. I’m hoping this will be the year I get back into a better exercise routine, it’s something I’ve been trying to do for months but things keep cropping up. I’m excited that I’ll be seeing my favourite band, Steps, live in May as I never dreamed that would happen and it still feels surreal at the moment. Slowly I’m becoming more assertive and learning to stand up for myself and look after my needs without feeling guilty and worrying I’m putting other people out. Sure we all want to be liked and respected but constantly pleasing others is detrimental to yourself. Don’t let yourself be taken advantage of and don’t be afraid to speak up and let your thoughts be heard. That doesn’t mean being defensive and being nasty towards others, it’s about knowing your worth. I’ve realised that when it comes to dating and I’m not going to be with just anyone. There’s nothing wrong with having a standard and I’d rather wait for something meaningful than be with someone for the sake of having someone. I’ve always been independent and I need a man that can handle that and doesn’t question why I do or like certain things – you should be accepted for who you are. Work hard, don’t settle and persistence and determination will pay off.

I wish everyone a fabulous year and I look forward to interacting with you in the comments and online!


Let me know what you’re excited for in 2020 and if you have any goals you’d like to achieve.

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First Impression Friday: YSL – Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation

Up until a short time ago I had never tried a foundation that wasn’t considered drug store. In the past I haven’t wanted to spend a lot of money on foundation shades that don’t match me as my skin is fairly pale. I’m now starting to think that by investing a little more money into nicer foundation I will be happier with the overall look of my makeup. Often higher end brands have more shades available to cater to more skintones and the quality of product is better.

I purchased YSL’s Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation on a whim after reading a review from a fellow blogger and spending the entire day watching reviews of it on YouTube. This foundation appealed to me through it’s claims and the fact it is ideal for drier skin types.

Claims

  • Reduces the look of fatigue and creates flawless, buildable coverage
  • Improves skin’s brightness and luminosity
  • Weightless finish – foundation feels and looks invisible on the skin
  • Conceals imperfections

When it comes to foundation I like natural looking coverage that helps even out redness in my skin and product that doesn’t feel thick to apply. I prefer foundation not to lean too matte or too dewy and sit somewhere in the middle. I believe this foundation does live up to its claims. Keep reading to find out why.

Shade

I purchased this foundation online and wasn’t able to swatch or test shades in store before I bought it which is risky but I am pleased to say the shade I purchased is spot on! The Radiance Awakening foundation comes in 30 shades and I purchased the shade B10 Porcelain.

YSL cater to different undertones similar to MAC; B = neutral undertone, BD = golden/yellow undertone and BR = pink undertone. The lower the number following the undertone, the lighter the shade. I selected B10 as I have warmth and coolness in my skin but I am still on the fair end of the colour spectrum. One shade lighter BR 05 Cool Milk, may have worked for me but I wanted a neutral shade for my skin.

When this foundation arrived I automatically compared it with the sample of MAC’s Studio Fix Fluid foundation in NW13 and this is a touch lighter which is better. I wasn’t able to wear bronzer with NW13 but I think I will be able to get away with bronzer with this YSL shade.

Top: YSL
Bottom:
MAC

Application

I used a clean Zoeva 102 Silk Finish brush to apply the foundation and product felt lightweight and easy to blend into the skin. Foundation didn’t drag or apply in streaks and felt silky smooth when being blended/buffed. The foundation blends out seamlessly and it’s not easy to detect where foundation stops and skin starts. The first time using this foundation my skin was drier than usual as I was getting over a cold but the formula didn’t cling or accentuate any dryness or settle into lines. Usually I like to apply one layer of foundation and touch up areas on my cheeks and around my nose if needed. This foundation had decent coverage after one layer and did allow me to build up product where I needed to without disturbing the layer underneath. The brush did soak up some of the product but I was still able to use the brush to really buff foundation into the skin.

Performance

The foundation is a nice consistency, it’s not thick and it’s not runny. Product will stay on the back of your hand between blending out layers. The foundation doesn’t feel heavy and glides over the skin. I’d say initially the coverage with one layer is light-medium which I like but you can build up coverage if you desire. The colour doesn’t oxidise after application and other makeup sits nicely on top. I used MAC’s Strobe Cream as a primer underneath and I didn’t find my face looked too glowy – it was a radiant, healthy glow which again is what I like. I will be testing out other primers to see how they perform with this too.

I had the foundation on for about 12 hours and it wore well during the day. Product didn’t fade or break down. My face didn’t look oily or shiny and the foundation kept my face looking natural and skin like. I do think it brightened up my complexion and made me feel more like my usual self despite the remnants of a cold.

Only wearing foundation and concealer:

Unedited photo taken in natural lighting.

Wearing the foundation with a full face of makeup:

Other products used:

  • Olay Complete UV Lotion Sensitive
  • MAC Strobe Cream – Pinklite
  • Collection Lasting Perfection Concealer – 1 Fair
  • Urban Decay Primer Potion
  • Colourpop BYOP, shades used: Hear Me Out, Wake Up Call, Feathered and Ringer
  • Zoella x Colourpop Supernova Shadow in OG
  • Rimmel Scandaleyes Lycra Flex Mascara in 003 Blackest Black
  • NARS Orgasm Blush Duo
  • Kathleen Lights x Colourpop Scorpio Moon lipstick
  • MAC Fix+

Summary

Pros:

  • Shade matches me well
  • Lightweight, buildable coverage
  • Seamless and natural looking on the skin
  • SPF 22

Cons:

  • Pricey
  • Not as many shades available as other high end foundations (still a fair selection at 30)

Overall, I am extremely pleased with YSL’s Touche Éclat Le Teint Radiance Awakening Foundation after only one use and can’t wait to wear it again! The product lives up to it’s claims and applies and blends like a dream. The formula is extremely comfortable and lightweight and virtually undetectable on the skin. If this is what all luxury foundations are like, I’m a convert!


Have you tried this foundation? Do you own any foundations you consider luxury?

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Thoughts on MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation

Last month during my time off work I went shopping with mum and was excited to stop by the MAC counter in one of the shops we visited. There’s not a MAC counter in my city – which is probably a good thing as I’d want to visit it all the time – and the nearest one is an hour away. I wanted to pick up a 30ml tube of Studio Moisture Cream but found out MAC don’t make that size anymore. A sign advertising a free sample of the Studio Fix Fluid Foundation containing a week’s worth of product caught my eye and a few minutes later I was being colour matched by the sales assistant. I don’t know whether I use a small amount of product or have a small face but the sample has lasted me 20 uses and counting at the time of this post!

Shade

I was matched to shade NW13 which MAC describe as ‘fair beige with neutral undertones for light skin.’ I use the shade NW10 of StudioFinish Concealer so this is where I expected to sit on the colour spectrum. Personally I feel the sales assistant got my shade match spot on! I used to think I had a predominantly cool undertone but I do prefer neutral shades that have a bit of warmth as my hair and freckles warm up my complexion and I don’t get a lot of redness unless my skin is dry or I have a breakout. NW15 would have been a touch too dark but I could probably get away with wearing NW10. I haven’t been wearing bronzer with NW13 as I find the shade matches my skin nicely on it’s own. The first time I tried the foundation with bronzer it didn’t look right, perhaps if I had NW10, bronzer would be fine. Next time I’m at a MAC counter I’d like to compare NW10 and NW13 side by side out of curiosity.

For those who are unfamiliar with MAC’s shade system: C is for warmer undertones, W is for cooler undertones and NW and NC sit somewhere between either extreme. The great thing about this foundation is that it is offered in 60 shades and MAC cater to different undertones really well.

Formula

Studio Fix Fluid is billed as a medium-buildable coverage SPF foundation with a natural matte finish and an oil controlling formula made to suit all skin types. For reference I have dry, sometimes sensitive skin and this hasn’t affected my skin or made it oily. The formula is on the matte side but it’s a very comfortable finish, more like a demi-matte – it isn’t thick or heavy at all. Highlighter and blush layer nicely on top and the formula is designed so it doesn’t emphasise pores and imperfections. I find this foundation makes me look radiant and my skin appears smoother and more flawless than when I use my drugstore foundations. I have been using this sample each time I have worn foundation over the past month and it looks a lot nicer on my skin than my drugstore options.

Application

As mentioned previously the sample of this foundation has lasted me 20+ uses so far! The product applies well with all four of my face brushes (a couple are more densely packed than others) and one layer of product is the optimum amount for me. I dot foundation around my face before buffing it in using circular motions. Product feels lightweight and silky on the skin. It is super easy to blend and gives even coverage; I don’t need to go in with more product in certain areas and there are no streaks or brush strokes left behind. The product does have a slight chemical, paint scent (could be the SPF) but it does disappear once product is on the face. I only notice it when I open the little sample pot to apply product.

Longevity

Supposedly this foundation lasts for 24 hours but I don’t wear makeup for that long to test it out. Studio Fix Fluid does seem like a good everyday foundation option for me, it doesn’t break down or get oily and lasts well during a day at work. Weather is starting to warm up in New Zealand but I haven’t noticed my skin looking shiny when wearing this or product wearing away. I have tried this foundation with MAC Fix+ setting spray and face mists from The Body Shop and it stays put with both. Product doesn’t sink into lines on my face and around my nose like some other foundations which keeps it looking flawless and smooth.

Swatches:

Unblended

Blended

Wearing the foundation:

To sum up, I really enjoy this foundation and am a big fan of how my makeup and skin looks when I wear it! The formula and shade get a huge thumbs up from me and the foundation is super easy to blend and apply. I would consider purchasing a full size bottle of Studio Fix Fluid in future once I’ve finished a few other foundations.


Have you tried this foundation?

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Makeup For Glasses Wearers

I have worn glasses since I was five years old and I am so used to them that I don’t like people seeing me without glasses on. They are like a security blanket and I feel vulnerable and naked when I’m not wearing them. I prefer glasses to contacts for this reason and also because I don’t like the thought of sticking my fingers in my eyes. In all the time I’ve worn glasses they have gone from geek to chic and are now considered cool. Glasses can be an extension of a person’s style or they can be worn purely for aesthetics.

I currently have two pairs of glasses (one black and one light purple) and funnily enough every past pair of glasses I’ve had have been purple. Purple seems to suit my fair skin and hair colour and it just works. I tend to go for metallic, metal frames and violet, indigo hues. I had been thinking about getting black frames for a while because I wanted to be bolder and they go with everything. My black glasses are slightly heaver than my purple ones but I do get even amounts of wear out of both (it may not look like it from Instagram but I do!)

I always like to make an effort to do my face nicely for work and when I go out. I came up with  some tips I stick to when it comes to applying makeup, which you might find useful if you also wear glasses.

#1. Think About Your Frames

Colour, whether they’re metal or plastic, shape of lenses, how big the lenses are and most importantly the style of makeup you’re going for. If you don’t wear a lot of makeup you’ll have an easy decision but I like my glasses to work with my makeup not be the main attraction. For example, if you’ve got gold metallic frames, you could pull that metallic shimmer into an eye look by applying a gold shadow and pairing it with a red lip.

When I wear my black frames I either pair them with a shimmery, neutral eye look and bold lip or a dark, smoky eye and a lighter, glossy looking lip colour to balance everything out. With my purple frames I can’t go too light with lipstick or eyeshadow otherwise I look washed out. I love to play up the purple and bold lips and colourful eyes actually work together with these frames because they’re a neutral shade of purple.

#2. Really Get To Know Your Face and Features

Since I started my admin role towards the end of 2018 I have been doing my makeup at 6am nearly every morning so I don’t have natural light on my side and I rely on my bedroom light. I don’t wear glasses when I apply makeup or use a magnifying mirror because I am so used to my facial features and the products I wear. I know how much to apply out of practice and instinct.

#3. Decide Whether You Want Eyes or Lips To Be the Focus

Unless there’s an occasion or I’m doing a themed look I will pick either eyes or lips to be the focus. It’s all about balance and streamlining what you want to draw attention to. I usually go lighter/neutral on the eyes and bolder on the lips but that’s just personal preference. Depending on your frames, colour on the lips and eyes can work – there’s no hard and fast rule.

#4. Go Lighter With Your Brows

If you have dark, thick frames you don’t want it to look like your eyebrows have been drawn on with a Sharpie. Natural brows look less harsh and will help to break up the different areas of your face and make your glasses stand out more. If you have lighter coloured frames don’t over compensate by making your brows darker, this will only make them stand out more and make the frames look more stark.

#5. Don’t Feel Obliged To Wear Eyeliner

Again, if you have dark frames thick liner will draw attention to the eye area. If eyeliner is a must try going for a brown or a thin line to give the eyes shape. I don’t wear eyeliner, I personally don’t feel I need it. I also can’t apply it to save to my life!

#6. Don’t Put Glasses On Straight After Applying Mascara

Don’t make mascara the last product you apply and put your glasses on straight after, chances are you will get little streaks down your lenses and have to take your glasses off again to clean them. My advice is to leave the blush/highlighter/setting spray step of your routine until after you’ve applied mascara to give it that extra minute or so to dry. You can thank me later!

#7. Setting Spray/Setting Powder Is Your Friend

Don’t forget this step if you often find smudges on your glasses throughout the day from makeup. Powder around the nose where nose pads sit, near the brows and under the eyes where the rims of frames can touch your skin if they sit close to your face. Being a dry skinned gal I tend to reach for setting spray more than powder but both products do the trick.


Let me know if you enjoyed this post! Do you have any tips of your own to share?

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Tips For Staying Safe On Tinder

Hi, my name’s Chanelle and I use Tinder. People will make jokes about others who use it and yes at one point I was embarrassed to admit I use it for that reason but I’m not ashamed to say I’ve put myself out there and would like to meet someone new.

Honestly, I’ve never gone into using Tinder with expectations and whether or not a friendship or relationship comes from it, I don’t mind either way. I use it simply because the world has become so digital. As well as potentially looking to meet someone day to day, it’s not doing any harm looking online too.

I’ve talked briefly before about not wanting to use Tinder for casual hookups (there are people who do use it for that, which is fine – I’m not going to shame somebody for wanting a bit of fun) but I’m the type of girl who prefers to be exclusive and focus on giving my all to one person. I also think using the app makes me feel more confident and I’m not afraid to message guys first and initiate conversation. Dating is surprisingly one thing that I don’t stress about a lot, I’ve got quite a relaxed attitude towards it. The dates I’ve been on have never ended with animosity or made me feel like I was in danger – they just haven’t worked out and that’s okay.

I’m lucky that the dates I have been on have always made me feel safe and I don’t associate negative feelings with meeting a guy for the first time. There are horror stories out there, not everyone is trustworthy and things do go wrong but if you take precautions to keep yourself safe the positive experiences outweigh the negative ones. I like to think I’m a sensible girl and I make logical decisions. I wanted to impart some of my Tinder dating wisdom to ensure other people like me who are looking to meet someone genuine do stay safe.

TIps:

Tip #1: Don’t Meet Straight Away (I.E. the day of the first message)

You’ll know by having a few conversations with a person over the course of a week or two whether you do actually want to meet them. You’re able to ask questions and gauge their responses and if they disappear for days on end or different things they say don’t add up you haven’t rushed into meeting them. If someone really wants to meet you they won’t mind waiting until you’re both ready.

Tip #2: Don’t Reveal Personal details on your profile

I don’t share the location of where I work or any links to social media on my Tinder profile. If I’m messaging someone and they ask what I do for work I will say but it relates to Tip #1, you’re able to gauge the conversation and decide who you let know where you work. Workplaces are an obvious location for stalking to start and for people you haven’t matched with to be able to see that information makes you more readily available to them.

There is an option to link your Instagram account so Tinder can show recent photos but I don’t want my pictures getting taken and I don’t want everyone to follow me on Instagram. Instagram usernames aren’t included on Tinder profiles and if I’m talking to someone, we get along and Instagram comes up as a topic, I can decide whether to give it out or not.

Tip #3: Always Let Someone KNOW if YOU Plan To MEET up With a Tinder Match

THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PIECE OF ADVICE I want you to take from this post! Every date I have ever been on my mum has known about. It doesn’t have to be a parent but telling a friend, family member or a co-worker where you’re going ensures if anything goes wrong they have an idea where you are or where you’ve been.

Tip #4: Meet In a Public Place

I don’t like to meet someone for the first time in a secluded area or a quiet part of town where no one is around. Usually I will be the one to suggest where to meet and generally always pick somewhere to eat where there’s guaranteed to be other people and witnesses around. I haven’t had to do this but if you’re in a cafe or restaurant and you do feel unsafe you can make an excuse to head up to the counter and let a staff member know what’s going on. You could even arrange with a friend before the date to casually ‘bump into them’ where you’re meeting so they know you’re okay and help you get out of the situation if you don’t feel right about it.

Tip #5: Arrange Your Own Transportation

I have been offered to be picked up on dates before but I have never accepted for the simple fact of getting into a car with a stranger. If you make your own way there via bus or driving yourself and the date doesn’t turn up you know the person’s intentions weren’t true and you are still safe and you can turn around and go home. I have let a few dates drop me home as I’ve spent a couple of hours with them to know I don’t feel uneasy in their presence. My mum always offers to pick me up or tells me to call her if I need anything and I know I can rely on her.

Tip #6: You Don’t Have To Give Out Your Phone Number

This relates to Tip #2 – if you don’t feel comfortable giving someone your phone number, don’t! If someone tries to question you, be honest and upfront and explain you only give out your number to close friends and family members. If someone wants to keep talking and getting to know you, it won’t matter and they won’t make you feel guilty. In time you can decide to change your mind.


I hope you found this post interesting! There are plenty of other safety tips out there like carrying a whistle or pepper spray or downloading an app that tracks the location of your phone so friends and family can see where you are. The ones I talked about are personally things I do and I would love to know if you have any tips of your own – leave them in the comments!

Happy dating!

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Chatty March Update

The first quarter of 2019 is almost over. I wanted to do a catch up post and check in with you all and update you on how things have been going. I figured the easiest way is to divide the post into categories and write a few points under each. Sit back, relax and enjoy!

Work

  • I started my admin job in November 2018 and I’m four months in now. I am definitely a lot busier than I was before but I am starting to finetune my routine and get to grips with everything. I have been tired lately but I put that down to a combination of working hard, starting a new job right before summer and this summer being so warm. I am here for the cooler weather!
  • I’ve got my first proper lot of time off since October coming up in April around Easter which I’m excited for. I plan on taking it easy, catching up on my Goodreads target and going through my wardrobe and clearing out clothes I don’t wear.

Blogging/Social Media

  • At the start of year I mentioned I would be blogging less. I have still been keeping active by commenting on other people’s posts and reading blogs and I’m finding one post a week is working at the moment. It’s enough to keep me inspired without feeling pressured to churn out content.
  • Instagram is my favourite social media and it’s where I’m the most me. I was thinking about my habits recently and how I tend to use the platform. I post a few pictures a week and I tend to gravitate more towards posting on my feed than uploading to my stories. I use stories for quick in the moment pictures I can still look back on as well as polls and sharing any thoughts I want to get out.
  • In my bullet journal I am tracking my Instagram followers to see how much they increase throughout 2019. I don’t have a goal or get obsessed with numbers but I’m curious to see the change.

Beauty

  • My lipstick ban is going well, I haven’t been tempted to buy any new shades at all and it’s surprisingly easy. I am enjoying using what I’ve already got.
  • The makeup low buy is also going well. This year I have bought a MAC pigment in Melon, some eyeshadows from Colourpop, a Zoeva makeup brush and Kevyn Aucoin’s Sculpting Powder in Light – I’ve been wanting to try contouring for a while now and know this powder is well loved.

Personal

  • I’m not feeling great with the way I look lately, I don’t know whether it’s the heat making me feel sluggish or having more of a sit down job but I feel the heaviest I have in a while. I nearly always take my own lunch to work instead of buying it but I’m not walking around as much as I was.
  • I stopped taking the contraceptive pill in December 2018. I have been keeping notes over the past few months and seeing if there are any noticeable changes in case I decide to write a post about my experience taking it and coming off. I’m not adverse to going back on the pill in future and I stopped taking it because I’m single, not for health reasons.
  • I have been in a pretty good place so far in 2019. I have a mood tracker in my bullet journal and the amount of days I’ve had that have been difficult or I’ve felt nervous/anxious, sad or angry have been outweighed by good days. I still write down one positive thing about each day and keep monthly gratitude pages in my journal as well.

Exercise/Diet

  • I want to take the stairs more at work if I don’t have anything to carry instead of using the lift. 90% of the time I walk down the stairs but going up is harder. Over time it will get easier and be beneficial.
  • I aim to use the exercycle to cycle 10km three times a week and I would like to get back into yoga. Yoga always makes me feel calm and is good exercise that doesn’t make you sweat but you can see the benefits if you keep up with it. I will try and aim to do yoga once at the weekend in addition to the cycling.
  • Beginning April 1st I want to consume less sugary treats. Over summer I had more sugary drinks than usual and I want to cut them out too.

2019 Goals Progress

  • The lipstick ban is going well.
  • I haven’t made any recipes from my cookbooks but I have made a list of ones I’d be interested in making – maybe I’ll get to one during my time off.
  • I am a few books behind on my Goodreads goal but it’s still doable.
  • I have only driven once this year and my goal is to drive at least twice a month. I’m still finding it hard to feel comfortable and pick things up.

Thank you for reading – I hope you are all keeping well! Let me know you’re doing and how you’re finding 2019!

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Story Time: My Recent Dating Experience

If sharing something makes me uncomfortable momentarily but is able to help another person I consider that a good result. I see my readers as friends and I like to treat you that way and keep you informed.


Over the past 10 months I have dabbled with dating; I’ve been on four dates with four different guys in that time, all with varying degrees of success. I take dating seriously and one of the most important factors is feeling comfortable around someone. I have always been an anxious person – though not always when it comes to dating – and the past year has magnified that. I do know my own mind and the kind of thing I’m looking for but I can also be laid back and I’m not judgmental. I find I don’t actually get nervous about dates until the day right before I meet the person and once the initial small talk is over I’m fine.

I have a somewhat relaxed attitude to dating, if a guy doesn’t like me for me I can’t change that and I don’t get too worked up and upset if it doesn’t work out surprisingly. My last date however left me disappointed in a strange way. First, a little bit of a backstory. We matched on Tinder in early February and by the time we met we had already been messaging for a couple of weeks. We messaged frequently throughout this time and there were certainly quite a few points it got more in depth than “Hey, how’s your day going?” This guy wasn’t arrogant or self centered, could hold a good conversation, take and make jokes and genuinely seemed interested to learn about me and I them. I am an open book and will talk about nearly everything, I’m not afraid to be honest and I will say if I feel a conversation is heading down a road I’m unsure of or I feel uncomfortable. We talked about break ups, shared a ton of personal thoughts and followed each other on social media.

Fast forward to date day, Saturday February 22nd. I was working my 6th day in a row and I had arranged to come home, get changed and meet this guy after work for dinner – I was looking forward to it. He lives in a different city and traveled to meet me which was admirable. I wasn’t thinking too far ahead and while the distance may have been a hurdle, when we were talking he didn’t make it sound like a problem. He was on time, we sat down and talked before ordering dinner and he was exactly how he had been when we messaged. He told me I looked nice (which I’ve never had on a date before) and I smelled nice and conversation wasn’t awkward. I ran up to the counter to order my dinner and pay before he could do it for me (which he later said was cute) and we both enjoyed our meal. Afterwards we went for a walk around town and had dessert and he invited me back to where he was staying. I’m not going to go into full details but there was some kissing. I didn’t do anything I regret and I didn’t spend the night.

The next morning we messaged each other and made plans before he went home. He picked me up and we went out for breakfast which was nice. We went for another walk, this time a 30 minute track through the Redwoods (a well known location where I live). I started feeling uneasy and nervous, I don’t know why but it wasn’t because of him. I sat down and was exhaling slowly and felt like I was going to have a panic attack. I told him I felt uneasy but not about the panic attack feeling and from then on I became quiet and feel like that’s where I blew the date. After the walk we played mini golf and I didn’t quite feel right through that either but we completed the game. At the end he kissed my forehead and dropped me home. He thanked me for the weekend and said he’d message when he was home safe. I sent him a message when I was through the door apologising for my nerves and said how I’d been feeling then went and had a nap.

I woke up to a message saying he was home and he also said he was tired which was understandable from driving and he hadn’t had the best sleep the previous night. I noticed the change in dialogue, tone and message frequency and prepared myself for what eventually followed two days later. On Tuesday night, February 26th, he sent me a DM on Instagram. He apologised for any pain caused and said I was too shy and too different and he’d only end up hurting me but that I seemed like a “great chick.” I knew it was coming and I don’t know why it was prolonged 48 hours, why couldn’t he have told me in person or said something when he got home that night? If you’re not feeling something there are signs and gut instincts. I asked a few questions and I don’t know how true his answers are or what his intentions were compared to what we talked about when we first messaged, but the two impressions didn’t match up. The previous week he’s telling me he doesn’t half ass things and we’d talked openly about personal topics and now he’s saying he’s not for me. I get personalities may not match in person and distance may have been an issue and if that was it, say – I’m an adult, I can take it. After the messages he unfriended me. Even if things weren’t going to progress and you tell someone you had a good time and they seem like a great person, could you not stay friends in the online sense? I’m not possessive or jealous and that shows more respect rather than feeling like someone’s experiment and as soon as you’re not required, you’re erased. I didn’t develop feelings for this guy but he said all the right things that I can see how I could have. It was definitely one of the better dates I’ve had and I did feel relatively comfortable in his presence.

Part of me feels like I’m making a big deal out of nothing and at least he messaged me and told me what he was thinking. I wasn’t sure whether I should write this post. It’s not a kiss and tell story or meant to hurt the other person involved in any way. I wanted to share and see whether something similar has happened to one of you before and how you dealt with it if it has.

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Hello 2019!

Happy New Year everyone! I hope the first few days of 2019 have treated you well. Let me know how you celebrated in the comments – did you go out or stay in?

I always think it’s important to write a post like this at the start of the year so I can prepare my readers for what’s to come and run through any changes for the year ahead. Throughout December 2018 I started thinking about the direction for the blog and I knew I still want to write and share posts but I’m not sure how frequently that’s going to be. For the first month or so of 2019 I will be having a very relaxed posting schedule and mostly sharing when I feel like it. I want to have some time to immerse myself in the new year and get into the swing of things without having a strict three post a week promise to myself.

I still have a few post ideas in the pipeline and I will be creating a list of future ideas in my bullet journal. When I do post I will likely still be posting on a Monday, Wednesday or Friday, I find those days work well for me. I won’t be writing a Redhead Rambles update every week and I am unsure whether I will still share my daily highlights at the end of each month. Perhaps I could do a combination of the two and share any significant highlights and things that have happened at the end of each month or every two months. I am not unhappy with my past posts but I want to write quality rather than quantity. If you follow me on Twitter and Instagram (links at the bottom of the post) you will be able to keep up with me more regularly and see what I’m up to!

I was curious to see what my most popular posts from 2018 are, not only as a source of inspiration for 2019 content but to look back and reminisce.

1. Rimmel Match Perfection Two Years OnI am a little surprised this was the most popular but it shows beauty/makeup is what a lot of my readers are here for.

2. The Breakup 💔I am so proud of this post! I’m not bashing my ex or being disrespectful, I simply recounted what happened. Everyone left such thoughtful comments and I really felt the support.

3. 1,000 FOLLOWERS GIVEAWAY!Following closely behind is the giveaway I ran at the end of September for (finally) reaching 1,000 followers. Nadine was the lucky winner!

4. GRWM: Trying New MakeupI loved this neutral look I created back in August. I used a MAC lipstick with possibly the cutest shade name ever, Hug Me.

5. 30 By 30A list of things I want to accomplish before turning 30. I’ve got just over 7 years left!

6. First Peek Inside My Bullet JournalI fell in love with my bullet journal in 2018. In this post I share some of the first pages I created. The post also features a flick through YouTube video.

7. Blogger ClichesThis is not poking fun at bloggers, I share what the majority of us seem to do and love.

8. Current Thoughts & Feelings: Dating/RelationshipsPersonal, honest posts tend to do well and this post follows my mindset after the breakup.

9. Remembering Tango – It’s highly appropriate this post was the ninth most popular, Tango would have turned nine in October 2018. I’m glad she features as in a few days it will be one year since we lost her.

10. Decluttering My Beauty DrawerI got rid of beauty products I didn’t like or use very often.


It’s important to look back but it’s also important to look forward and not stay in the past. I have four goals for 2019 and I thought I’d share them with you.

  1. Try not to buy any lipstick – This will be tough as lipstick is my favourite makeup product but I’d love to be able to say I did it!
  2. Make recipes from my Kmart cookbooks – I bought two cookbooks last year and haven’t made anything from them yet, I hope this changes.
  3. Read 50 books – I read 48 in 2018 so I don’t think this is impossible! I’m also taking into account I work slightly more hours now.
  4. Drive at least twice a month – During the last couple of months of 2018 my driving practice fell by the wayside so I’m hoping to get back into practising more regularly.

Over the coming weeks I may think of more goals but they are what I have for now.


I hope 2019 brings everyone lots of love, laughter and happiness! Cheers to the year ahead!

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Redhead Rambles: 2018 Round Up

In the past my end of year round ups have consisted of a number of highlights relating to that year, Fifteen of ’15, Sixteen of ’16 etc. This year I decided to switch things up because I wanted to be a little more reflective and talk about the goals I set at the beginning of 2018.

I’m not going to lie, 2018 was fucking difficult at times. I don’t want to spend a lot of time talking about the negatives but it’s easy to see how people get bogged down. I look back at myself and all the different emotions I’ve felt throughout this year and part of me can’t believe it happened. I see myself as someone who just keeps going because I have to. I’m strong and I always hope the next day will be better. I may be accused of being a pessimist and sure I have moments of pessimism but I actually see myself as a realist and I have plenty of moments of optimism. I don’t take things for granted and I note down something good about every day even if the day itself is not good.

The undercurrent of 2018 was change. I’m not going to let the breakdown of my relationship define the year but when you’re betrayed you’re not the person you were before. I became harder. I’m even more hyper aware of how people act and what they say. I’m smarter now, I’m extra cautious and I will not give my trust easily. If someone doesn’t respect you and can’t match your effort, don’t be around them. I will never stop being kind but that doesn’t mean I’m going to let people take my kindness for granted and walk all over me. I’m going into 2019 stronger and more resilient. If people don’t want to be in my life, they know where the door is! Being on my own for the past eight months has helped me focus on myself again and my priority is looking after my happiness, my mum’s and Halo’s.


At the start of 2018 I set eight goals. Here’s how I got on:

1. Journal everyday – Complete.

2. Improve my photography – My pictures have improved. I continue to use manual mode on my DSLR. I would like to get out more with my camera and try outdoor/scenery shots.

3. Read 50 books by September – I came close, I read 45.

4. Watch 20 movies – I watched 27 movies in 2018: The House At the End of the Street, Steve Jobs, Poison Ivy, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, The Post, Oblivion, Murder On the Orient Express, Crooked House, Cellular, Money Monster, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Don’t Breathe, The Intern, Dark Places, The Tall Man, Avengers: Infinity War, The Next Three Days, Fracture, Arbitrage, Assumed Killer, Seeking Justice, Panic Room, Passengers, The Resident, Mothman Prophecies, Jack Reacher and Jack Reacher: Never Go Back.

5. Declutter – I had a few makeup declutters and did a project pan. I also cleaned out my wardrobe.

6. Lose weight – After the breakup I didn’t have to try but I’ve put some of the weight back on.

7. Don’t spend unnecessarily – I think I could have done better with this but I don’t buy just for the sake of it, I research and consider my purchases. A girl’s allowed to treat herself sometimes!

8. Do one new thing each month – Complete. I left this goal until the end because I knew it would take up the most room. Below is a list of new things I did each month.

January

  • Started bullet journalling
  • Uploaded my first YouTube video

February

  • Got a new Birman kitten
  • Played mini golf

March

  • Tried L’Oreal’s Lash Paradise mascara
  • Downloaded my first eBook

April

  • Burnt my Ecoya candle
  • Purchased hot chocolate sachets from the supermarket

May:

  • Purchased a Dannii For Target coat

June:

  • Bought my Shaaanxo eyeshadow palette
  • Started watching Instinct (TV show)
  • Wore blue highlighter

July:

  • Bought a car
  • Tried a new Indian restaurant
  • First time using facial oil – love it!

August:

  • New glasses
  • First order with White Fox Boutique

September

  • Joined Goodreads
  • Bought some goodies from MECCA
  • Reached 1,000 blog followers!

October

  • Makeup Revolution launched in New Zealand
  • Tried an apple turnover

November

  • Got a promotion at work

December

  • Saw Shania Twain in concert
  • Tried sushi for the first time (not a fan)

Did you achieve your goals this year? How do you feel 2018 was for you?

I want to say a huge thank you for all the support this year! I feel lucky to have such lovely blogging friends and to be able to continue getting to know you better. Wishing you all love and happiness for 2019! ❤

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Redhead Rambles #47

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.

  • At work on Friday we had our Secret Santa gift exchange and I got a pretty stationery set. I missed everyone else getting to open their presents though!
  • My watch and cuff set from Daniel Wellington arrived and it is beautiful! The fit is perfect and the watch is so lightweight to wear. My mum loves how dainty the petite face looks too.
  • I did a trial run of my Shania Twain concert makeup over the weekend and straight away knew that I needed smokier eyes on the night. I took inspiration from two of her music videos and was happy with how the look turned out.
  • After my makeup was done I went into town and looked round a couple of shops. I bought a bottle of Daisy perfume by Marc Jacobs and some chocolates.
  • Sunday was more of a relaxed day. I didn’t get dressed, I stayed in my pyjamas, caught up on YouTube videos, painted my nails, washed a couple of makeup brushes and changed my sheets.
  • Monday was my last day of work before the concert. I got up early on Tuesday morning, showered and had breakfast before leaving to head up to Auckland for the night. When we got to Auckland we met my brother and he and I had butter chicken for lunch. I started getting ready around 4pm and my brother dropped mum and I off to catch a train into the city shortly afterwards.
  • Mum and I went to McDonalds to eat then made our way to the arena for the concert. I checked out the merchandise stand and bought a Shania keyring and black jumper. No doubt you’ll see the jumper on Instagram at some point.
  • The concert started at 8:30pm and as Shania entered the arena and made her way to the stage she walked past my row and I got to touch her hand! It was a surreal moment and one I’ll treasure forever! The concert lasted two hours and I had such a good time, I was singing and up dancing and wished it could have kept going.
  • The next day mum and I went back to the mall we met my brother at the previous day and did a bit of shopping. I bought a CD, a calendar for 2019 and a pair of Skechers sandals.
  • I was announced as one of the winners of The Anna Edit’s Instagram competition to win a signed copy of her book, An Edited Life.
  • Halo was pleased to see us when we arrived home.
  • I opened a parcel to see it was a surprise goodie box from Dannii. I have already eaten the chocolates and started on the shortbread. I can’t wait to try the beauty products too!
  • I told a few people at work about my concert experience when I returned on Thursday.
  • The battery in my FitBit needed changing but it only needs doing every seven months or so which is pretty good.

What I’ve been listening to:

  • Shania Twain Now and Greatest Hits – With my Shania concert this week it seemed only right!

How was your week?

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