Life · Uncategorized

Facts and Favourites tag

Oh shush, auto-correct thingy. I’m British. Favourites has a “U” in it.
Ahem. I mean, hi! The beautiful Cait tagged me on twitter to do this tag, I thought, why not. I have plenty of things planned over here, but I’m currently having some laptop issues – sadface! So, if this post is a bit janky, that’s why. I tag… anyone who wants to do this.

hi

What is your middle name?
I actually have two middle names, but I’m not gonna share those here :3

What is your Favourite drink?
I’m not sure I have one, if I’m honest! I’m quite partial to a hibiscus peach iced tea from starbucks. I love a strawberry and creamy cooler from Costa too – but I’m lactose intolerant so I strike that for the obvious reasons.

What is your favourite song at the moment?
Nero – In to the Night. Kinda, I love basically the entire Between II Worlds album. I’m not really sure if it’s my favourite as such right now, but it’s one I’ve been listening to a fair bit.

What would you (or have you) name your children?
Claudia, Olivia, Finn.. some others, maybe. I used to think about this sort of thing a lot, but not in more recent years.

Have you participated in any sport?
Loads, in my youth! Netball, Hockey, Football, Trampolining, Badminton, Rounders, Karate, Judo.. I’m probably forgetting some.

What is your favourite book?
I don’t think I have one. I have loads of favourites, I’m a book worm and if you’re interested in what I’m reading, or wanna keep track of your own books, I’m over here at Goodreads.

What is your favourite colour?
A more turquoise shade of blue.

What is your favourite animal?
Hrnnng, hard. Cats. Probably. But I also adore bears, sloths, bunnies (whom I deem all to be named “flopsy”), cows and hedgehogs.

What is your favourite perfume?
Flash by Jimmy Choo, that’s my “signature scent”. People always say I smell nice. Yay.

Where is your favourite place to holiday?
I don’t go on holidays very often. I recently went away for the first time in 8 years. Prior to that, the only regular holiday I am old enough to remember going on is to Ibiza in my teens and tweens. So, I’ve yet to find a favourite I suppose?

On a scale from 1 – 10, rate your childhood.
Probably like a 8. Ask me that question a decade ago and the number would probably be a lot lower. It’ll probably go up a bit as I’m older.

Do you speak any different languages?
I learned French in school, but I can’t remember anything. I did speak very basic, introductory/conversational Swedish, Korean and Mandarin at one point, but that fell out of my brain. I know a small amount of Spanish and I have decent comprehension of Japanese.

Do you have any siblings?
I do! I have a brother who is 5 years my senior. When it’s my birthday in October, that becomes 4 years until his in December.

What is your favourite clothes shop?
New Look, probably. I buy most of my clothes at ASDA if I’m honest.

What are some of your favourite TV shows?
Currently, my favourite TV show is Orphan Black – sad it’s ending soon! A couple of classic favourite of mine are Fringe, House and 30 Rock.

PC or Mac?
PC, for sure. I’ve used a macbook before, in fact, I own a 2006 macbook and it had some perks, but nothing that outweighed my windows laptop.

What phone do you have?
I have a Motorola G3.

How tall are you?
I’m around 5’5″

Do you have any pets?
I have a beautiful white and tortie cat! Her name is Mitzeee and I adore her endlessly. There are also two cats at my parents’ house, Gemma and Bisto. Also white and tortie, Bisto is the less saturated kind and largely white, I forget what they call that. Generally white and tortie cats are female because it’s a specific genetic trait. When male cats are tortie and white, they have a less saturated tortie colour. Gemma is really small and long furred, so I like to call her Basil (Brush). I’m young enough to consider the family cats “mine” as well, right?

 

#cat

A post shared by Liz 😺 (@lizzumsbb) on May 8, 2017 at 9:08am PDT

Beauty · make-up · Uncategorized

Free Make-up brushes (Offer over)

Do you want some FREE make-up brushes? If you have Amazon Prime, you can get yourself this pretty set of ten, instagrammable brushes for absolutely free, delivered next day! I was searching to see if Amazon had the new Real Techniques brushes but instead, stumbled upon these!

free_brushes

What’s the catch? There isn’t one. Unless you count Prime as a catch. If you don’t have Prime, you can still get them free, you just pay for postage, but that’s basically the cost of the brushes – unless you do the minimum spend of £20 for free delivery.

Anyhow, here’s how you get your free brushes!
Go to the amazon page for the Free Make-up Brushes.
See the promotion on the page that is shown in the screenshot below? Click it and hit “Redeem”. The brushes are the same cost as the discount, making them cost £0.00!

Screenshot_20170725-113611

Add the brushes to your cart.
In the cart, the price will not show the discount, but it does at checkout!
Before confirming, check, it should say discounts applied -£4.99, then hit checkout.

I was going to add a screenshot, but this is limited to one per person, you only get the offer for one set of brushes. I already tried and made the purchase myself, so I can’t purchase any more.

All that’s left to do is to wait for your free brushes to arrive. Enjoy! Get ’em fast, I’ve no idea how long this will be available for, it could have been an error or may only be while stocks last. I’d appreciate it if you would share this if you found it useful!

Blogging · Life · Uncategorized

The Blogger Excuse

The Blogger Excuse. Do you know what I’m referring to? You do, don’t you? I think everyone with a niche topic blog is probably guilty of this at some point or another.

blogger excuse

So, what is “The Blogger Excuse”? The blogger excuse is using your blog as an excuse to indulge. Many of us have blogs on topics that we’re passionate and interested in. We can use the blog as an excuse to indulge ourselves and purchase something that we wouldn’t otherwise get if we were blogless – all in the name of content. It’s often a costless and actually fairly pointless activity but we justify it with “oh, but I can blog about it” when in actual fact, we could wait for other reviews which inevitably are written on new releases, wait for 3 for 2 deals and other offers for a product we don’t REALLY need.

So. You have a blog, you follow all of your favourite related brands and their PRs, follow them on twitter, facebook, instagram, pinterest, their own newsletters, the whole lot. You hear of a new product release and you can not wait to get your hands on it… to review on your blog. Not because you need another x/y/z product in your life, but because you fancy it and your blog is the perfect excuse. It’s okay, right? So, you spend a fortune on products that you probably don’t need but they’ve just come out and of course, you’re not alone in this, because as you upload your post, you realise… in come hundreds of posts on the exact same product to the bloggosphere.

desk

I ask you this. What makes your blog, your post unique? What makes it stand out above all of the other posts of identical nature and often, identical format. (Big, popular blogger does x with their blog, many follow suit because it’s what a successful person does/has?) What makes The Blogger Excuse actually worth it? IS it actually worth it? Or could you actually refrain, save money and create more unique content?

What do you think? Are you guilty of using the Blogger Excuse? I know I sure have been.

Art Supplies · Art/Crafts · Subscription Boxes · Uncategorized

ScrawlrBox (March Contents)

scrawlrbox

ScrawlrBox is a monthly art supply subscription box which I have grown to love. The first time I ever got the box, admittedly, I didn’t rate it and immediately unsubscribed. However, I kept an eye on the boxes since then and decided to give it another go as every other box I had seen, I thought looked really good. Since re-subscribing, ScrawlrBox has failed to disappoint, in so far as products go at least.

scrawlrbox_packaging

As you can see, the packaging is less than exciting, and for March’s box, it was inadequate; more on that in a moment.
One of the upsides about this box, is that it’s a slim box that fits perfectly through the letterbox, so no waiting around for the postie. Each box’s contents are wrapped in tissue paper with a sticker. As for the contents themselves, well, every box has the same sort of format. You get a few art supplies, a print with some info about the artist on the reverse, a couple of sheets of paper that are perfect to use with the tools you received, a scrawlrbox sticker, a sweet treat and lastly, a bookmark sized card with a run down of what you received with an art prompt on the reverse.

scrawlrbox_march

All of these goodies cost £15, including delivery. I’ve explained the packaging to you, and as the image shows, the art tools sent for March were chalk pastels. Usually the tools are pens and markers an such so no worries on those, but the packaging resulted in a lot of people receiving dusty and broken art supplies. Mine were dusty, but that’s no issue, I cleaned them up for the photograph and only one pastel was broken and still fine to use. No big deal, but others received boxes in a worse state. Thankfully, the company took this feedback on board, at least appear so. The box received since then was packaged in the same way, but it was products that would ensure just fine when mailed in such a way.

If you like the look of Scrawlrbox, you can sign up, or, alternatively, they even have the option to buy previous boxes if you missed out. I’ve found it a great way to top up my supplies and try new products!

Have you ever tried ScrawlrBox or another art subscription box? I’d love to hear what you think or if you have any recommendations for other affordable art boxes!

Health · Uncategorized

Cervical Comb-over

frogs-1672919_960_720

So, I had my very first smear test, or cervical cancer screening test. Yeah, it was weird and I decided I wanted to share the experience with you, start to finish, because I know many young women are apprehensive about having the procedure.

So, first thing is first. Booking the test? Well, you get a letter in the post. I got mine earlier on in the year, even though I was still 24. I kept putting off booking my test because I needed to see a nurse for bloods and a pill check as well anyway. I decided I would do it when I got back from a trip away. I actually got a second letter, this one had a leaflet with more information about the procedure, what happens afterwards, and requirements prior. You start getting invited around the age of 25. It is worth noting that you do NOT have to have the test if you don’t want to. It’s ultimately your decision, but please don’t use embarrassment or anxiousness as a reason to avoid it.

To book the procedure, you just call up and book in with the nurse once you’ve had the invite – the letter does tell you all this, but I’ll tell my experience regardless so you know what you can expect. Now, when I booked in, the receptionist didn’t actually tell me about the things you need to do before-hand (or rather, the things you need to NOT do). They ask that you book the test for the middle of your cycle, basically, it’s better if you’re not on your period for the test as they can get a clearer reading. They also say to not have a bath the day before and to avoid sex the night before – specifically to not use spermicide, lube or a barrier method of contraception. It’s probably just better to avoid it all together to save having to maybe need the test re-doing. If the sample is inadequate, they will call you back in three months time to take another sample. The test itself? The only thing you need to do is undress your lower half. If you wear a lose skirt, you can keep that on. The test itself only takes a few minutes.

untitled-1

The nurse will ask you to lay down on the bed – I was given some of that paper stuff to put over my lap. You go spread-eagle and she (or he! you can request that a female perform the test when booking if you’re concerned) will insert a lubed up, scary looking contraption in to your fanjo. It’s called a speculum and it’s not actually scary. This basically dilates your vagina, opening it up so the nurse can see the cervix. Then she uses a little brush like pictured above to swab some cells from the cervix. This is what is sent off for testing. For me, the opening of the speculum was uncomfortable, a little painful in fact. The tenser you are, the harder it is for them to get on up there but if you’re anxious, tell your nurse. If it hurts, tell your nurse. They’re happy to take their time or to stop if you need it. It only takes a moment to collect the cells. While the speculum itself was weird and uncomfortable for me, I honestly couldn’t feel the brush. I dunno if it was because I was focused on the fact there was this woman all up in my junk and the pressure kinda made me feel like I need the loo or if it’s something you genuinely can’t feel but that was it. Brushy brushy, then she gets on out of there and you can put your junk away.The nurse advises that I may experience some spotting later on and if it happens, to not be concerned. Personally, I didn’t get any, but my ladyparts did feel a little weird for a while.

A little embarrassing? Perhaps, but it’s worth it to monitor your cervical health and potentially reduce the risk of cervical cancer.

Once the sample is taken, you will get a letter back after about two weeks with the results. If the sample was adequate and completely clear, you’ll get called back again in three years. If the sample was not adequate, you will get recalled in a few months – there are loads of reasons the sample might not be adequate so don’t worry about it. Anything else? They’ll tell you in the letter what will happen. I’ve not had my results yet or anything so I cant really speak on that part.

If you want some more technical information, you can check out the NHS page on Cervical Screening. This post was a bit longer than intended but I hope it puts some of you at ease about the test.

Beauty · self-care · skincare · Uncategorized

Manuka Honey Masque by Vitamasques

Hurrah, my first ever review on my new blog. And you’re readi- wait, no, don’t leave, what are you doing?

Still here? Cool. Now let me talk to you about my favourite sheet masque in existence.

manuka_honey_masque

I discovered this face mask thanks to Glossybox and I fell in love with it. Initially, I wasn’t overly excited by it as I’d never heard of the brand before and sheet masks usually are a terrible fit on my face. The holes in all the wrong places, y’know? I tried it, loved it. I’m a cheap git, so almost had a coronary when I saw they’re £3.99 per masque; but then a discount code from Glossybox turned up in my inbox and all was right in the world. Alright, maybe that’s an exaggeration, but I was pleased none the less and ordered myself a packet as well as one of their other masques to try.

So what is it? The Manuka Honey Masque by Vitamasques is a Korean sheet mask with triple layer technology to enhance the moisture content in the mask and help the skin absorb the goodies it holds inside. At the risk of being captain obvious, that would be extracts of Manuka Honey.

manuka_honey

The instructions say to apply the mask after having cleansed your face and to leave it on for 20 minutes. If you got the Glossybox this was featured in, the products all went together pretty nicely, in the case of my skin anyway. However, now I opt for a good buffing using Lush’s Ocean Salt scrub and my Magnitone brush before applying this mask.

Unlike every other sheet mask I’ve tried, this one was actually a decent shape and fit for my face – the holes were in the right places and everything, which is rare in my experience and masks usually require repeated re-jigging as they slide around as the time passes. After the 20 minutes were up, I wiped my face with the masques limp corpse before doing the suggested “patting” of the face afterwards. I hate the feel about ten minutes after though, so I tend to proceed to wipe my face off and apply my usual moisturiser. I found improvement to the texture of my skin and a more plump appearance thanks to the more intensive hydration than the level that my standard skincare regime provides. A much needed boost after good ol’ winter dryness!

The Manuka Honey Masques retail for £3.99 or you can buy a four pack.

Have you tried this facemask before? Had you heard of the brand prior to it being featured in a Glossybox?