29 December 2013

Nails Of The Day - NOTD 1

This is my first 'Nails Of The Day" post, and for it i thought I'd keep things fairly simple! My nails are all awkward lengths due to working so much and them all constantly breaking at work,  and please just ignore my cuticles.

I thought this was just a really pretty yet sophisticated manicure, using the Barry M Matte Nail Paints. I used the colours, "339 - Espresso" and "336 - Caramel", which i think both retail for £3.99 in various drugstores and online. I also used Sally Hansen's "Hard As Nails" as a base coat.

I did my base coat, followed by two coats of Caramel, allowing them to dry thoroughly in-between. The second coat did take a good couple of hours to dry completely, but after a couple of minute you're good for general use.

I then used one of my smallest dotting tools and applied the Espresso nail paint in an alternating pattern! I think this looks really chic and retro as well as being sophisticated enough for work as well. 

Overall i really like this manicure, but i think as with most nail arts, its a little to time consuming to do on a daily basis, no matter how pretty i think it is. I was really happy with this on my nails and received many comments on how lovely they looked.  A very successful first NOTD i think! Whats your favourite matte manicure?

Love Anya xxxx

27 December 2013

Pretty Little Books.

I have a thing for pretty books, diaries, sketchbooks and things like that, and i figured that with the new year approaching i'd show you all what i'd be using for 2014!  

The first book i found was this adorable little notebook from Waterstones for £9.99, I'm not 100% sure of what I'm going to use it for yet but i just thought it was too cute not to buy. The design was done by the illustrator Rob Ryan, and its so cute, i just had to buy it! Its also around A5 in size so isn't too big to not fit in your purse but it also isn't so small that it becomes useless.

On the inside it features a similar print but in a bright yellow colour. It sounds like it would be horrible but with the pattern it goes really well and just looks generally really pretty! The paper is a sort of "Off-White" colour and is fairly thin but definitely isn't as thin as normal printer paper so would be good as a little sketchbook!

This second book is a 2014 diary from Paperchase for £12. I'd seen this online and just fell in love with the design and use of colour, also i needed a diary as my parents keep complaining about how unorganised i am, ugh! Although it is a little costly, its definitely worth the money, it has good paper and the quality of the book is great, as well as the fact its from paper Paperchase.

The inside features a new page for each weekday, and half a page for every weekend, i thought this was really useful as I'm always running out of room on my calendar and this has plenty or extra space for college notes and things! 

The last book is also from Paperchase, and cost about £7 i think! It features a variety of different paper types from plane, to lined and squared, as well as pages with sleeve and photo holders. I thought this would be really handy to keep on me if i ever needed to make a any notes or do math for how much I'm spending and things like that!

If you follow me on my art blog you'll also know that i have a thing for brown paper, as weird as it it, but when i saw this i just couldn't resist buying it! Its definitely become one of my most favoured items in my handbag.

So these are just a few of my favourite books that I've bought over the last couple of months, there are more but these are the only ones i really like and have found useful. What things do you guys love/collect? Mine is definitely books, which isn't the worst habit i guess!

Love Anya xxx

25 December 2013


So its that time of year again! A time to sit round with all the daily, eating far too much food, opening the presents that the people can't really afford to buy you and watching cheesy Christmas films that you've seen hundreds of times, but thats all part of the fun! 

For me i spend Christmas Eve at my dads and for half of Christmas Day, i then go to my mums for Christmas dinner and to see the rest of the family and after we sit down watching tv and opening presents! Its so much fun! I just love christmas because i think everyone is happy, and everyone makes an effort to be cheery, i also love wrapping presents, even if I'm not particularly good at it! 

I hope everyone else has had a fun day, what do you guys get up to on Christmas Day? 

Anya xxx

23 December 2013

Traveling, Trains and People Watching.

This is probably a bit of a peculiar name for a blog post but never mind. This is just going to be something completely unrelated to beauty or fashion or anything of the kind. So here we go.

On Wednesday the 18th of December 2013, I made the roughly 200 mile journey from Bournemouth to Norwich. It was my first time travelling this distance completely on my own as before i had met someone in London and done the rest of the journey with them, and quite frankly I was terrified. I left my house promptly and 10:10am that Wednesday morning and walked on down to the bus stop, here i was greeted by a lovely chap who was telling me all about his grandkids and how they all do art like me, not 100% sure on how he knows i do art but never mind. 

The bus arrived at 10:22, 7 minutes late. I figured something like this would happen so I'm lucky i planned to get to the train station with enough time spare! The bus driver questioned my request for a child ticket, but after assuring him that i was 16 and did have my child bus pass he seemed more than happy to let me on. The journey to the train station only took about 10 minutes which was luck as it normally takes about 25! 

I got off the bus and ambled on down to the train station where i found that my train was not going to where i thought it was. On the board it had 10:57 - Farnborough, well, that was my train, but wasn't i supposed to be going to London Waterloo? I'm pretty sure i didn't book a train with changes. Anyway, i promptly found one of the train people and asked them and they assured me that it would be fine and it was just the slower train, I'm not sure if i was happy about this or not, 2 hours and 40 minutes to get to London? Alright then. 

The train arrived on time and to my delight there was only one other person in my carriage! I sat down facing backwards as this is  bit of a habit of mine and got out my tablet and continued reading the second Hunger Games book. The train journey was fairly hassle free, my ticket didn't get checked which was a bit annoying, and there were signalling problems at Southampton which made us about 5 minutes late, but it was a nice journey overall. I got about 45% of the way through The Hunger Games too, which made me really excited to be seeing the film later on! 

The train arrived at London Waterloo and i headed towards the Underground to get the Jubilee Line (?) to Stratford. As i got there a tube had just pulled up and i walked straight on which was lucky. The carriage i was on remained fairly quiet and we arrived at Stratford about 20 minutes or so later. 

I always forget how much i love London, with all the amazing buildings and architecture, as well as the fabulous shopping at Westfields! Oh how i longed to sneak in and make a few cheeky purchase but alas, i had to go and wait for my next train. 

The thing I'll never understand about Stratford Train station is the lack of signs. My train was due to arrive at platform 10A. Well, this would have been fine if i had been there before, or it was signposted, or anyone there had a clue where it was! I asked a couple of people and none of them knew so i phoned up my friend who had to direct me, how was i supposed to know you go down a set of stairs follow the path round, up another set of stairs and you're there? How was i supposed to know Stratford? How?

After all the gaffing about with finding the platform i didn't have to wait long for my train, and before i knew it i was on my way to Norwich! The thing about the Greater Anglia train is that they have a quiet coach on all the trains and normally i would have sat in this bit, if it wasn't for the fact that when i walked through the train it was probably the loudest part. I just wasn't to shout and be like "ITS THE QUIET COACH NOW SHUSH" but i have no authority and i thought making people hate me probably wouldn't be the best, but i settled in a lovely quiet coach again facing backwards and made the 1 hour and 55 minute journey to Norwich. 

Don't worry, I'm nearly at the end of my journey guys! The train arrived at Norwich train station on time, even if it was very dark outside. I hadn't planned for this. I got off the train, used the loos and headed out to find my way to Chapelfield. Don't ever underestimate how difficult it is to navigate your way through a city you don't know. Apparently the journey from the train station to Chapelfield should have taken about 20 minutes. I took 50. I don't even know where i went so i couldn't begin to tell you if i tried. All i remember is thinking i was lost, but no, i made it there in the end, found my friend and headed off to Costa to wait for him to finish work. All Costa's are the same so with being over 200 miles away from home it gave me a sense of comfort and i got myself a Belgian Chocolate Cooler, and a Triple Chocolate Chip muffin and settled down reading the rest of the Hunger Games.

What have  i learnt from this experience though? 

  • Ticket Conductors are your friend, just as long as you have a ticket.
  • Costa is the most welcoming place on earth.
  • I want to move to London.
  • I hate loud people on trains.
  • One book is not long enough for the two journeys.
  • Platform 10A does exist.
  • I spend far too much money on trains. 
  • Westfield's is like heaven.

Anyway, i hope you've enjoyed reading about my awful journey, what are some bad travelling experiences you guys have had? 

Anya xxx

11 December 2013

My Winter Favourites!

Hello lovelies, I'm sure not many of you are reading this but I'm going to go ahead and post it anyway. This is my collection of my best products to have this winter, and with christmas coming up I've made sure they're all budget friendly!  Also, who else loves my recycling of a scarf for my 'wintery' background? I thought it was really clever.

1. I Love … Mango & Papaya Body Butter - Superdrug. 

 I bought this as a cheap alternative to the normal Body Shop Body Butters, and was pleasantly surprised. The packaging is really eye-catching with the bright colours and have similar styles for the whole range. The first thing i noticed when i opened this was the smell; its so fruity, sweet and summery. A perfect way to bring a bit of sweetness into the dull dreary days of winter! 

The actual body butter itself has a very thick consistency, almost like double cream and applies very economically as a little goes a long way! It did leave my skin feeling a little greasy but that went away quite quickly and left it feeling soft and hydrated. 

Overall i love this body butter, its so cost effective and will definitely be one of my most used products this winter! 

2. I Love … Strawberries & Cream Hand Cream - Superdrug

So to follow on with the I Love … Superdrug series i chose the Strawberries & Cream Hand Cream. As with before the first thing you notice is the smell, although this one is certainly a lot stronger, sweeter and almost overpowering compared to the Mango & Papaya body butter. It is so strong that i only tend to use it in open spaces or at home to avoid stinking out the place! That aside, i do really like the smell but it certainly won't be for everyone! 

The actual hand cream itself works really well and leaves my hands feeling soft and nourished which is especially good with the cold days of winter drying them out. It does leave my hands feeling a little greasy, which seems to be a theme with the  ' I Love … ' series, but again, it goes after a few minutes after having applied it.

The bottle is small enough to keep in a handbag which is really useful if you get dry hands while you're out because its so easy to carry it with you and apply it whenever you need it. 

3. The Little Pink Tin - Superdrug

Another product i bought from Superdrug is 'The Little Pink Tin' and is a Superdrug own brand, meaning that it comes with a brilliant price tag! Having tried various different lib balms such as Vaseline, Baby Lips, and Berts Bees with no luck i tried out this little beauty. 

Let me just say that i get really nervous in social situations and therefore resort to biting my lips and when they're dry and cracked already it just makes them even worse so i was trying to find something to prevent them from flaking. This works wonderfully, my lips feel so moisturised and lasts for a good couple of hours which is a lot better than some of the other products i had tried where i was applying things constantly and having barely any affect.

It looks and feels a lot like Vaseline, although this has a slightly grainy-er texture and doesn't melt when you leave it in your pocket. I love this little tin and it definitely deserves its spot in my winter favourites! 

4. Rimmel London Lasting Finish Lipstick Tantrum Boots 

I bought this lipstick a while back now but never got around to wearing it. I thought it was too bright and showy to be worn in the summer, but it suits winter perfectly. I chose 'Tantrum' because it was a very bright, pigmented red and it suited my skin tone really well. 

This lipstick applies really well and is very creamy and long lasting, i do find that although it stays on the lips t does also attach to everything else your lips come into contact with *ahem*. I find it to be quite dry and personally i don't find it moisturising however i know other people may disagree. 

Its a very pretty, vibrant shade of red and would look perfect with a casual everyday look and wouldn't be out of place either if you were going for a more dressy kind of day! I have recently heard however that it is very difficult to find this shade.

5. Rimmel London Match Perfection Foundation - Boots

Im very fussy when it comes to foundation and hate feeling like theres anything on my skin so when i discovered the Rimmel Match Perfection Foundation it was like i was falling in love. This has a fairly light coverage which is brilliant for me, but it still manages to stop my skin looking patchy and horrible. 

It comes in a glass bottle, with a pump applicator and plastic blue lid. Although the lid feels a little flimsy and like its going to fall off, i do really like the packaging and the simple typography on it. 

The pump itself is really useful as it doesn't pump out too much, and seeing as it has quite a watery consistency this is definitely a good thing. Below are photos of what it looks like once pumped out and once rubbed in on my skin. 

As you can see it rubs in really well and leaves a fairly matte finish. When i apply it to my face however i use a brush and sometimes it looks a little shiny so i use a powder over the top. 

I really like this foundation as it is so affordable and good for everyday use. It brightens up your face as well as hiding any blemishes, leaving you with a lovely complexion. 

6. Rimmel Stay Matte Powder - Boots

I have actually already been through 2 of these powders and this is my third one. I normally opt for the lightest shade however this is 005 and possibly one of the darkest. Ive found that unless i use a darker shade with the Match Perfection Foundation i end up looking ghostly white! 

Anyway, this powder i have found is really good for setting the foundation without packing too much makeup on. The powder applies really nicely and evenly and leaves a lovely lasting finish. 

The packaging is a little bit flimsy and I'm reluctant to leave it in a makeup bag in case it does break or anything, but its a useful powered to use on its own or with a liquid foundation! 

So thats it for my winter favourites, i hope you've enjoyed this post and i'd love to hear about some of the products that you guys are using over this winter! 

Anya xxx