Thursday, 28 June 2012

So I'm jumping off a bridge....

...For charity that is!

I work for a charity called Scottish Autism, a charity which aims to supports people with autism and autism spectrum conditions such as Aspergers syndrome amongst others, as well as provide advice and support to their families also. The charity does this by running day services, outreach and can even provide 24-hour support in someone's own home if they need it (which is what I do, I work in Housing Support), as well as also having their own school in Alloa, which is purpose-built to meet the needs of children with ASDs who wish to learn. If you want to learn more about Scottish Autism and their work, visit their website here or visit them on either Twitter or Facebook. I advise you to, they're nothing short of lovely and helpful!

Now it takes a lot of money to run so many much-needed services, and in October I'm going to do my bit to help by abseiling down the side of the Forth Rail Bridge in Fife to raise money for the charity. That's 165 feet of abseiling I'll be doing folks! I have to raise at least £125 to be able to do the abseil, but ideally, I'd love to raise £1000 for Scottish Autism.

Why am I doing this? Well, basically because I love my job, and I would do anything to help those in my care. So if it means making sure there's enough money for the facilities they need to access the community, to give them as full a life as possible, then throwing myself over the edge of the Forth Rail Bridge is what I'm gonna do! And what I would love even more is if folk could sponsor me to do it. If everyone I know gave me £5, I'd be well over my target in no time. So if you believe in what I'm doing, you can find my donation page here:

Thank you for listening!

Christina xo

Monday, 25 June 2012

I belong to Glasgow (sort of...)

Hello, my name is Christina, and I am a Glaswegian. *Phew* big confession out of the way and now on to my main point...

I'm originally from Glasgow, I moved up to Fife to start a new job, so every chance I can I like to go home and visit family and friends. Usually, these experiences are pleasant and I love being able to have a catch-up in my home-town. However, last weekend when I went home for a friend's engagement do, for some reason I didn't really enjoy being back in Glasgow. The purpose of this post is to discuss why this might be, through discussing Glasgow's pros and cons.

PROS of Glasgow:

It may be a city, but it is one of the greenest cities in the U.K, which means it's lovely on the rare occasions that we have good weather.
Shopping. Glasgow is the biggest shopping city outside of London, with an astounding array of high street names, designer boutiques and unique independent stores. A girl's dream city then...
Nightlife. In Glasgow we have amazing pubs, clubs, concert venues, comedy venues, late-night restaurants and cafes, independent cinemas and theatres. You name it, Glasgow probably has it, there's something for everyone.
Events. There's always something happening somewhere in Glasgow. Comedy festivals, markets, Mela, West-End festival, Commonwealth 2014 etc.
The People. Glaswegians are an amazing bunch. Friendly, generally approachable, full of stories and often very unique and slightly mental. They also have real pride in their city, and will happily tell you anything you wish to know (or not know sometimes :P)
Culture. There's so many different cultures that have settled in Glasgow: Polish, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Indian, Brazilian, Venezuelan, you name it! And they all bring their own music, cuisine, art etc to the city, which means their is a huge array of events that go with it.

And now on to the Cons...

Greenery. Yes there's a lot of green space, but the minute the sun comes out it's all taken up with screaming weans and fat people with little clothing. Bleurgh. And yuppies stealing all the good outdoor seats at my favourite haunts. I WAS HERE FIRST!
The People. Now I love all my friends dearly, however at the moment, all I ever seem to hear when I visit is: "When are you moving home?" ... Eh whenever I'm bloody well ready! I miss Glasgow, but it gets me really annoyed and upset when my friends assume that I'll move back because why would I want to live in Fife (Having a fantastic job that I love isn't enough apparently...)
Nightlife. There are some real shit-holes in Glasgow. Just saying...
The People- Part II. If you've tried getting around Glasgow city centre on foot you'll know what I mean by this. People move so. friggin. slowly! They're always staring at something completely pointless as well, like a new shop that's actually been there for months, or looking at a development and wondering what it will become. It's Glasgow, it'll either be a new shop or new flats!
Snobs (i.e. People Part III). I grew up in a rather nice part of Glasgow, the West End. It is often described as the cultural heart of the city, with an abundance of high-end bars, restaurants, shops and salons and more. But it also contains an abundance of pretentious a-holes. Folk with names like Farqhuar and Jacinta who 'lunch' in the Ubiquitous Chip and don't balk about paying £20 for the cheapest bottle of Chardonnay because they want to be "seen". You also get folk who SAY they're from the West-End, when in reality they're from Govan. Or Castlemilk. Or Bridgeton (these are places that get marked as "dodgy"). At the end of the day, there are nice bits in each of these places, and there are shitty parts of the West-End, so why lie? Be proud of where you're from, it's no different to anywhere else.

Rant over. Dunno if I feel any better though...

Christina xo

Thursday, 21 June 2012

A quick wee share...

One of my friends, Emily posted this link on my Facebook wall, and I thought it was a really interesting article! So I wanted to share it with you guys :) enjoy!

Christina xo

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

No.7 Summer of Dreams Bronzer.

I cannot believe I am about to review a bronzer. Here's why: I look like this... 

i.e. I am extremely pale and red-headed, and I've always felt that your skin colour should not be the same as your hair colour (too much orange...) so I generally steered clear of bronzer for fear of getting it wrong. Until now...

I was in my local Boots when I spied No.7's new bronzer, Summer of Dreams. Already it sounded promising. I waited a few weeks til I was at home in Glasgow and visited Boots to purchase it. I am so glad I did because it is fabulous!

It's so lovely-looking, no? It retails at £13 (I paid £8 with what my friend Claire calls No.7's "£5 vouchers of temptation") and to me it's worth every penny. The lower picture shows it's a fairly pale bronzer, but the colour is very warm, with only a slight hint of shimmer (Though be warned, when I first purchased this there was a shimmer pattern over the top for aesthetics, so with your first swatch you won't pick up much colour, just shimmer. After this it's fine though.). I would best describe this shade as a pale terracotta (There's only 1 shade though, so this might not suit everyone). When worn, it warms up my complexion without being too noticeable, it just looks like I've seen a little sun. When I use it with my baby kabuki, it  doesn't kick up much loose powder, and I don't need very much to warm up my face, so there's very little wasteage. I suspect this will be enough bronzer to last me a long time, and I'm very happy that it's this one. It successfully manages to bronze my face without making it look orange and unnatural. Score!

Christina xo

PS. Sorry there's no picture of this on my face, I couldn't really get it so you could compare the difference. Trust me, it looks pretty good :)

Sunday, 17 June 2012

You just kissed a Boom Boom baby...

Apologies for the snappy title! I'm gonna write a review of MUA's Lip Booms, and when I explained what they were and showed them to my boyfriend, his response was: "Haha! Boom boom!" (Because I have 2, for further explanation as to why we find this funny, see here )

There's been a lot of hype on the web over MUA's collaboration with pop singer Alexandra Burke, Lip Booms, and a lot of folk have been raving over them. I now have 2, so I figured I would tell you lovely people what all the hype is about...

The snappily titled Lip Booms come in 8 shades, ranging from neutrals to bright, vivacious reds and deep plummy shades. Each Lip Boom is doubled-ended: one end being a matte lipstick and the other is a glittery highlighting gloss, and the concept behind this is that you can wear these 4 ways, according to MUA's webstore:

"1. Lipstick alone for a matte look.
2. Lipstick with highlighter applied just to the centre of your lips to create a full volume illusion.
3. Lipstick with highlighter all over for a super-glossy look.
4. Highlighter alone for a sheer pearl finish."

On the left we have "It's a Situation" (all the shades are named after sayings that Alexandra Burke reportedly utters... judge this as you will) and on the right is "Doin' Good." "It's a Situation" is an utterly fabulous shade of plum with a tad of reddy-pink thrown in, with a matching highlighting gloss, and "Doin' Good" is a lovely neutral pink shade. Below I have swatched each shade:

Sorry the light's not great! (N.B. I was gonna show you guys what they look like on, but the lighting throughout my flat was just not playing ball. In the flesh both shades look grand, "It's A Situation" looks incredibly goth-tastic and dramatic on me in particular!) 

My only gripe with these is the gloss. It has a lovely vanilla scent, but it's more glittery than highlighting, and when I say glittery I mean gritty. Used sparingly to highlight the cupid bow, it's not so bad but if you want to use it all over the lip I'd be careful. Having said that, the lippy end is so lovely on its own I just tend to use it without the gloss. The lipstick lasts well, and I found I could go a good 2/3 hours between re-applications. For £3 (currently on 2 for £4 from Superdrug and you get plenty of product, and some rather fabulous colours to choose from.

In summary, fab, longish-lasting lippy, shame about the gritty gloss! Still bargainous though...

Christina xo

Saturday, 16 June 2012

The Mascara Maven


I said a while ago that I wouldn't get drawn into the world of beauty blogging. However, the more make-up I buy, the more I wanna talk about it. Normally, most folks would chat to their gal pals about make-up and their preferences, but I live at least 60 miles away from the rest of my close friends, which makes chatting and playing with make-up a bit tricky! So I figured I'd try blogging about it for a while and see how I go...

The first thing I've noticed is that I have rather a lot of mascara, 12 to be precise (I know that some more seasoned beauty bloggers might think "Is that all?" but it feels like a lot). One of my favourite things about my face is that I have naturally longish lashes, so I like to make a feature of them. So here they all are, in order of price:

L-R: MUA eXtreme Volume Mascara in Brown/Black (£2)
Collection Extreme Coloured Lengthening Mascara in Blue(£2.99)
17 Peep Show in Brown/Black (£4 on offer)
17 Photo Flawless in Black/Copper (£5.99)
No.7 Exceptional Definition in Brown/Black (£7.50 with £5 Voucher)
Max Factor False Lash Effect in Brown/Black (£7.99 with £3 voucher)
L'Oreal False Lash Telescopic in Brown/Black (£10.99)
Benefit They're Real in Black (£11.50 with £7 Debenhams gift card)
Beautee/Relian Mascara in black (with fibres) (around £20 at a Girls Day Out show)

And the samples at the bottom: Max Factor Masterpiece in Black, MAC Zoom Lashes in Black and Lancome Hypnose Drama in Black.

My go-to mascara is usually the Max Factor False Lash effect, but recently I've been trying to use more of my mascaras and I've found a few that work pretty well. The MUA mascara is bargainous at £2 but my only issue with it is that it doesn't put a lot of mascara onto the lashes, but it does create a fair bit of volume, so I tend to use this in conjunction with something else to build up the lashes.
The Beautee/Relian Mascara was something I picked up at a Girls Day out (kinda like a beauty, fashion, chocolate, booze paradise for women) and it's lasted me at least 18 months, which is pretty impressive. You basically paint on the "transplanting gel", i.e. the mascara, then paint on the fibres, then repeat if necessary. It really does give you a false-lash look, with very little fibre fallout. AWESOME!

I have no real major dislikes with any of these TBH. The only let-down I have is the Benefit. They're Real is apparently the No.1 mascara in the U.K., if not the World and it's supposed to give you these amazing falsie-like lashes. Well I may have been applying it wrong, but my lashes ended up looking like Clump-Central. Not cool considering it's normally £18.50. However, I have found that if I use it over another mascara, it does add some good length. 

What mascaras do you guys use? If you want to know my thoughts on any of the other mascaras, just comment and let me know :) Generally let me know what you think of this post, it's my first proper beauty post and I like to get feedback!

Christina xo