Sunday, 21 April 2019

Testing Huda Beauty's Liquid Lipstick Formula

I bought this Huda Beauty liquid lipstick at Christmas and I have been getting a great amount on wear out of it. The shade is Jetsetter and it was part of last years summer line. It is however still available now.

Before this purchase I had wanted to try the liquid lipsticks from Huda since their launch. They seemed to be the stand out product from the brand, and all the reviews were positive. I would class Huda Beauty as a high end beauty brand due their pricing. I have tested a lot of liquid lipsticks on this blog over the years. You can read reviews here of - Kat Von DJeffree StarKylie Cosmetics and Colourpop.

The liquid lipstick has a thin, fluid like consistency which I love. The colour is super pigmented which is what I find is often a major downfall with some liquid lipsticks, and they can look patchy once applied to the lips. I like the shape of the doe foot applicator as the flatter side helps to get around the curves of my lips and helps avoid smudges. One thing I did find though is that you need to work fast as this dries pretty quick, as I struggled to rectify a small smudge without ruining my entire makeup. This did mean on this occasion that I managed to test out applying a second coat. I found that it dried down equally and evenly which is also a big tick in my eyes.

This liquid lipstick has a matte finish. I struggle with matte finishes to lip products as my lips are naturally very dry. I always apply a good amount of lip balm, but I usually go for more of  a semi - matte finish. I love Colourpop for that exact reason, they offer a wide range of finishes to their liquid lipstick range and their ultra satin finish is my favourite. With matte finishes I know that they are always going to be drying on my lips, but I did find this dried downed particularly dry. It wasn't uncomfortable but I put a gloss over the top to make it feel a little bit better.

Overall, I am pretty impressed with this formula from Huda and felt as though it last well on my lips throughout the day and wasn't transferable. I have worn this multiple times, and I have had compliments regarding the colour. It dries down to a nude pink which has a hint of purple running throughout it. I like that it is not too bright. On a daily basis I am not one to wear a very vibrant colour or tone of lipstick. This is a great bridge between a day to night shade, and it can pull an everyday makeup look together. I would definitely buy other liquid lipsticks from Huda Beauty, and I want to try the demi-matte version from her line as it might solve the drying aspect.



Wednesday, 17 April 2019

Netflix Picks #3

Looking back on my list of Netflix picks over the last few months they could not have been more polar opposite if I tried.

Before watching Fyre Festival I don't really know how I missed this fiasco happening. It's an hour and a half documentary which followers the organisation of this luxury festival which is going to cost hundreds to attend, but it is going to be 'the' festival of the year. It is interesting as it follows them in the here and now and the organisation behind the scenes. It unravels how from the start it was never going to work and how the main guy organising it doesn't really have a clue or handle on anything which is actually going on from day dot. He has all of these brilliant ideas but doesn't think about the implication of them. I won't ruin it but the whole thing turns into a catastrophe, and worse of all it has devastated effects on the little island of the Bahamas where it is being held.

Abducted in Plain Sight is one of the strangest programmes I have ever watched in my life. This was another one which was not only the topic of conversation at work but also within my group texts. Something strikes you and you think okay now that has to be the extent of this, and then bam within the next few minutes a bigger hurdle spirals out of control. The storyline itself is strange. It follows a family from America who attend church and life seems to be as happy as larry. A new pastor arrives in town and starts to create close connections with the family especially with the daughter called Jan who at the time is 8 or 9. Things develop and the pastor starts to grow closer to Jan and when she is 12 she gets abducted by him. There are lots of other aspects which go on within the family and it's all very eye-opening. My reaction to it is how can you be living with your eyes so shut that you literally cannot see what is going on in front of you.

So it is no secret that I am a very messy person, so I thought Marie Kondo being on Netflix would be inspire me. I have read her books and I did take some ideas with folding and doing one big clear out on board. Marie is a breath of fresh air and I really enjoyed watching this and how she is able to change people's lives just with a clear out.

Dirty John is a little freakish as John basically stalks a new love interest and everything turns bad very quickly. The one thing I love about this show is it moves a long at a fair pace and you aren't waiting for three episodes to find out an answer. It follows a rich independent woman and how easy it can be to fall in love. It also highlights how easy it is to fall out of love when you really get to know the ins and outs of someone you think you know. I feel like the ending was definitely shocking, but I love the twist it was great.

You is one of those programmes that everyone was talking about at work. Everyone knows I am a Netflix lover and was like Lucy you need to watch it. True to their words I dived straight in. There are lots of different elements which I liked about this. It definitely drags you in and captures the audience. First of all it has Penn Badgeley (Dan from Gossip Girl) as the main character and he owns a book shop. He meets this girl who he falls for but she has quite a complex history. It shows flashbacks to his previous relationships and how obsessive he can become. These things start the shine through and he is very territorial. It once again moves on at a good pace and I think there will definitely be a series 2 of this on the way.

Yummy Mummies is an Australian reality show which is a little bit like Real Housewives. It follows four soon to be mums who all have rich husbands, and their journeys to birth. It is classic easy watch TV with the extravagant baby showers and push presents. The mums are all different and it's interesting to follow throughout their pregnancy to birth.

Back with the Ex is another Australian reality style show. Basically a person nominates an ex who they believe is the one who got away. It follows them over a few months and they have a few challenges to complete to see if they are able to rebuild their relationship. It is easy going, with a few twists and turns in the works. Overall, this is a classic binge-worthy programme which is an easy watch.

Sex education is a programme I nearly forgot to write about. It's a bit strange the way it is set in modern times but it definitely has a 90's theme with the styling of the show. It is based on a group of high school friends. Otis is a typical experimental teenager who is lacking in the love department. His mum is a sex therapist and basically embarrasses him at every opportunity. He meets Maeve, a cool badass girl who is very attractive but also has a very difficult home setup. They set up a sex clinic with advice from what Otis has learnt from his mum and Maeve being the organiser and money collector. They are many other characters which all have their own troubling teenage worries which are very relatable. The mix of the characters and the great story line makes this a smash hit.

Flint is different to anything else I have mentioned in this post. It is a documentary which follows the Flint policing department in America. Flint as a city is known for having high crime and violence rates. The programme follows through the time of the city getting a new mayor, and how the community have lost faith in the justice and police system entirely. They face a water crisis where all connections have been contaminated. It also delves deep into the chief's position, and  the implementation of new strategies to try and tackle just some of the major issues like gun and knife crime. I think this is a very honest and open documentary and it really does highlight current affairs.

Sunset Selling is a last minute addition to the line up. After binge-watching 5 episodes in one night. I sent a text to my best pals saying "girls you need to watch this, it is like the hills all over again". This time round instead of the girls working at fashion houses, they work in high end real estate in LA. This estate agents sells million pound houses to the elite, but as always with a group of girls there is the bitchy and catty dramas alongside. It's great as you have the inside knowledge, and you also get to look into some of the most fabulous houses out there on the market. In particularly they have a house worth $40,000,000 which is the biggest house which they have ever had the opportunity to sell. It is all about who can make the most commission between the girls to earn the most.

If you enjoyed reading this I have done two previous Netflix picks posts which you can read here and here.


Sunday, 7 April 2019

Centerparcs Whinfell Forest

Before this visit I had never really thought about going to Centerparcs. Whilst studying at university in Cumbria, I had heard many people mention going to Centerparcs at Penrith. In my third year of university one of my friends who worked at Centerparcs managed to wangle us some free passes to the pools. It was a lovely day and we always said we would come back. Nearly three years later my friends and I from university finally booked it.

I wasn't sure how much it was going to cost, but I had heard it was pretty expensive. There are set times that you can book to go either Monday-Monday, Monday-Friday or Friday-Monday. We opted for the Friday to Monday slot as it fitted in best with all of us. For a 6 bedded two storey lodge it was £589. For us paying on an individual basis we thought it was good value for money. It worked out just over £30 each per night. However, I am fully aware that for a family they could go somewhere more luxurious for the same price. It definitely depends on the type of holiday which you are looking for.

From sunny Bolton to Penrith with no stops it took an hour and 40 mins to get there. We weren't able to check into our lodge until 2pm. You are able to make full use of the facilities from 10am on the day you arrive. We decided we would book to go into the spa on the first afternoon. The spa was £33 per person and we spent about 4 hours in there. It was lovely and a perfect way to catch up. Considering it was early March we got lucky with the weather and we were able to take advantage of the outdoor pools. Although, if they weather wasn't as good there are also different indoor pools which were great and very relaxing. Within the spa they have a range of saunas and steam rooms which has different scents and themes to them. I think we were lucky with the timing of when we went to the spa as there were only a handful of people there, and it made it a much more relaxed experience. 

After finishing up in the spa we headed back to our cars. Centerparcs have a strict policy that you can only drive your car from the car park to your lodge after 4pm. Once at our lodge you can unpack your car and leave you car outside your lodge until I think 10pm. You have to take your car back to the car park, you cannot leave it outside your lodge. I think this is mainly due to safety as the roads are quite windy and thin. We decided to take our cars straight back to the car park rather than having to do it later when it was dark.

When you arrive you get a wrist band which is the key to your lodge and also has it uses throughout the activities and facilities. You can also pay for things on your wristband which if you were there for longer it could be a great option. We had been to the local Morrisons before checking in and bought food and drink for the entire weekend to keep the costs down. On the first night it was great as we just chilled and drank some wine and had a thorough catch up.

When had quite a full on day planned on the Saturday. It started out with having sausage and bacon butties. 

We had pre-booked our activities all in advance which I would highly recommend doing. We booked the lodge quite a while ago and each month we booked an activity to do to break up the cost. We decided to be all adventurous and book to do a tree top challenge. Well all I can say is that if you ever need to confirm your fear of heights, this will either make or break you. I come ultimately say this soul-destroyingly broke me completely. I had a breakdown when I got to the top of the first tree as the wind was blowing and I felt as though the tree was going to snap in two. Once I managed to just about stop crying the first obstacle was to step out into swinging tyres. I managed with a big queue following me to make it to the end. I hated every minute except the zip wires. Overall, I will never be doing anything like this again, and would much rather of spent the time in the spa.

After my hell of a time on the treetop challenge, I decided I literally needed a glass of wine. We didn't have anything else booked in until the evening so we decided to go for a walk around the grounds and into the village. Within the village there is a supermarket and four or five gift shops. There are also some restaurants and this is where the swimming pools are. 

In the evening we had booked to have a meal at Bella Italia which was lovely as always. We had then booked for a 2 hour session of bowling. This was great fun and we thoroughly had a fabulous time. The only thing which I said would be nice for groups like mine would be if there was a bar, as there is nowhere to really go except back to your lodge. I totally understand the reasoning for this as it is very family orientated, but I think it would nice to have a more adult only area. We went back to our lodge for some drinks and played some games. 

In the morning we had booked to go to the Pancake House which is overlooking the lake where you can hire pedlos and boats. The menu is great and offers a wide range of both pancakes and waffles. As you can see I had this delightful strawberries and cream waffle which set me up for the day and it tasted delicious.

We had planned to spend all of this day in the swimming pools and that is exactly what we did. As guests of Centerparcs you have unlimited free use of the swimming pool area. It is much bigger than you expect. It had an indoor area which is very child friendly as it is much shallower. There are also three different adult slides which you can use. We made the most use of the outdoor area as there are two heated outdoor pools which were incredibly relaxing. There is also a large jacuzzi area and a small lazy river. We spent a good three hours within the pool areas.

Due to family and work commitments everyone decided to not stay the last night. We left late on the Sunday afternoon and I had thoroughly had a great time. There is an extensive list of activities available so if I was to go back I definitely wouldn't be worried that there is nothing else to do. Like I said at the start of the post, it is not particularly cheap especially after you start to add on the cost of activities. However, it was a lovely weekend and as we broke the cost up over several months we didn't have a massive payout to pay as soon as we arrived. There are a few different Centerparcs locations dotted around the UK which I would love to visit. I think I will definitely be booking another weekend away as soon as I can fit one it.


Wednesday, 3 April 2019

Fenty Beauty Pro Filt'r Concealer

I love writing beauty reviews and it takes a lot for me to get really excited about a new base product. I've wanted to try lots of makeup from Fenty Beauty and after loving a highlighter and primer from the range, I decided to treat myself to their latest beauty launch the concealer. The pro filt'r instant retouch concealer is what I have needed in my life for a while. I still always look for high coverage concealers as it was what I needed since the first day that I started wearing makeup due to my acne. However, I am a very lucky that I only get the occasional spot nowadays and I don't know what but my under eye circles have taken a turn for the worse. I mean I am always tired, but I literally look tired even on a day when I don't particularly feel it.

I had read a few reviews before making the purchase and everyone only praised it. I only spend my money on products which I really want these days, and I really wanted this. It is not cheap, I took a little gasp at the price especially when putting my pin into the card machine. However, I wanted it so it was a payday treat. I managed to justify this by saying to myself that my concealers were running low which they are.

I have loved the ethos behind Rihanna's Fenty Beauty, she recognised a big gap in the market for beauty lovers with all skin tones. There is no denying that the beauty industry needed a shake up, and Rihanna stepped forward and took it upon herself to create a beauty line where any person could go into a store and could find a shade which matched their skin. How many times have we had to mix two shades together to try and find a shade which could possibly resemble our skin tone out of a line of six shades on offer? In this concealer range there are fifty shades, yes fifty. I am not being funny but this line in what makeup is about, everyone enjoying it and feeling amazing wearing it.

The actual concealer itself is what you all came here to read about. I am very happy to say that it is perfect. I bought this six or seven weeks ago and have been using it on a regular basis. I have tried many concealers but in order to get full coverage the formula is using very thick which makes complete sense. However, this is a breath of fresh air as it is very creamy and light. It does have a slightly more matte than glow finish but it works incredibly well. It is not too matte and still has a light luminosity throughout it. I put on one layer which creates a medium-full finish and then let it dry. I have tested going in with a second layer and does produce a perfect full coverage finish.

The main aspect which gives it the wow factor is its brightening factor. Like I say I have found concealers which do the covering part of the job, but this adds an instant light around the under eye area which is where it has been mainly tested. After application it instantly adds a lift to my face. I always look in the mirror every time I apply it to try and put my finger on exactly what makes it so special, but I think it is a mixture of having everything which I am looking for. A big aspect is definitely the slight glow. It is also the light formula which is not too heavy meaning it doesn't crease easily.

I have the shade 160 which is a really great match for my skin. I would say my skin is light with a slightly pink-neutral undertone. I went to Harvey Nichols to buy this, and the assistant was incredibly helpful when matching it to my skin. They advise to use the Fenty concealer brush for application, but it costs £19. At the time I felt as though as I already have a good range of brushes and sponges at home to the job. I have been using my trusty Beautyblender to apply this. I like to get it really wet so it expands and then give it a really good squeeze, and then bounce the product into my skin.

 I also like the shape of the applicator on the concealer wand. It works really well at getting into the inner corner of your eye, and it is nice and flat if you want to do create the classic triangle underneath your eyes.

I think it is always good to include comparisons to other similar products. If you like the Nars creamy concealer I think you would like this. Out of the two I prefer this one as I tried the Nars one a few years back and I didn't repurchase it, as I just did not fall in love with it. I did really enjoy using it, and they both have similar creamy and light consistencies. However, I have just really loved how the Fenty concealer looks on my skin. I feel as though I can recommend this to others and feel pretty confident that they will be impressed.

If I haven't already justified this purchase enough, then this might just do it for you. When I am doing any beauty reviews I always look at how many mls I am getting for my money worth. When I saw that this Fenty Beauty concealer contains 8ml (0.27fl.oz), my eyes instantly popped out of my head. I headed straight for my makeup drawers and had a good rummage within my other concealers. I discovered that my NYX, Makeup Revolution and Sephora concealers all contained 3.4ml (0.11fl.oz), which is less than half compared to this Fenty one. So really for 3.4ml it is costing less than £9 for the same amount. Some have much bulkier packaging making you think that you are getting a lot of product for your money. 8ml is the most I have ever seen in a concealer, so hopefully it was a last me a long time before needing to repurchase.



Wednesday, 27 March 2019

My favourite shops in Disneyland Paris

If you are like me and you are a sucker for merchandise then this post is for you. Within this Disney series I have tried to put together all the posts which I wish I had been able to read before I went away.

Before this trip I did not think I would be too bothered about getting on board with lanyards and pins. Me and my sister decided on day one that we would buy a lanyard to keep our magic pass and fast passes for the rides in. Once we started to walk around the Disney Village we were drawn into all the different pins that were on sale. There was a shop called Emporium on Main Street which had the best pins which we could find. It had the biggest variety and I honestly spent 30 minutes+ deciding on which pins I actually wanted. In all honesty there are pins in every shop you go in, I tried not to get too excited but it is so hard as there are some majorly cute ones.

At the end of the big rides they have individual shops which are all based on the rides characters. One which I loved in particular is the Buzz Lightyear shop. I totally loved the ride and then when I came out into the shop I thought it was fab. The individual shops are great if you want something particular as they have more character themed merchandise.

In terms of buying clothing and accessories Disney Fashion in the Village is the place to be. This is probably my fave shop. My sister and I really loved the jewellery which this shop had to offer. We both bought the minnie mouse birth stone earrings which also come in a full collection including necklaces and bracelets. I have worn these everyday since I bought them and I have got so many compliments. If you like Pandora charms at each park they have disney exclusives. At Disneyland Paris they had some lovely charms and I treated myself to one. I think it is great way to remember such a fabulous trip. There is a few places you can buy Pandora charms from throughout the parks, however I found this shop was laid out really well. This shop also sells spirit jerseys which a lot of dedicated disney fans collect at the different parks. I really wanted a spirit jersey in particularly the purple potion one, however the price shocked me. I thought they would be 50 Euros maximum, but they were in fact 70. 

In terms of wanting the must have merchandise the Disney Store in the Village is great. We went in here on the first day and it definitely got us in the ultimate disney mood. It has a wide range of absolutely everything. We bought our lanyards from here and it got us in the spirit and we practically skipped into the parks. It has all of the little bits and bobs which I always can't resist such as keyrings and pens. There is just something about picking up the little things that I really do not need.

Inside the princess castle there is a little shop called La Boutique de Chateau. This has some beautiful and surprising things in it. I know we went in February but this has lots of Christmas baubles and extras that are all exclusive. Everything looked so beautifully displayed. It also has ornaments and ornate pieces of different aspects of disney which I really loved. It shows that they have a vast variety of merchandise to try to cater to everyone from the lowest to the highest end.

I kept seeing on Instagram that you could get mickey shaped confectionery and I am sucker for anything like that. I managed to track down that you could get these goodies from Cookie Kitchen which is located on Main Street. On the last day I decided to buy a few bits from the kitchen which I could take home with me. I bought marshmallows and biscuits which were all mickey shaped, and they are just about as Disney as you can get. This shop also sells other food goods which are all just as charming.

These are just a handful of my favourite shops which I came across. There are soooo many shops within the village and both of the parks. For sure you could spend a full day just going in and out of them and picking up everything which you could ever want!



Sunday, 24 March 2019

Where we ate in Disneyland Paris

In my first post all about Disneyland Paris I mentioned that we opted for the full board option. We did this as when we booked there was a great upgrade offer, and we had been pre-warned about the price of food within the parks. We wanted to go knowing that we had everything paid for and all the money we took would be for spends and snacks.

When we arrived and checked onto our hotel we were given a magicpass. This card contained everything I needed for the trip. It had uploaded onto it our full standard board meal plan. My sister had been previously been and had the inside knowledge regarding using your meal plan at other restaurants not allocated to us. The lady at the desk said we could eat in any of the other restaurants not on the standard meal plan list still, however each meal has a worth of 30 euros. We found this great and made eating much more flexible as we could eat anywhere we wanted.

I also want to say that you are not set to eating at lunch and tea everyday. The day we went to Paris we didn't need lunch in Disney that day, so on the last day we had one meal left to use. We got eight meals each on our cards from our Wednesday to Sunday stay. It worked out perfect for us, you can basically use your allocated meals however and whenever you want within your stay.

When we first arrived it was just before lunch so we decided to quickly grab something as we had not pre-booked any of our meals. We stumbled across Hakuna Matata and went in for something to eat without having to wait a long time. In here I ate chicken goujons and fries which I think was 19 euros including a drink. If you do not use your full worth of 30 Euros it just cancels off you card, you can not carry any money over for future meal purchases. The portions in here were huge, me and sister could have easily of shared.

We were staying in the hotel Santa Fe within the Disney resort. When checking in the lady asked if we had pre-booked any meals which we replied with no. She advised us to do it as soon as possible as she said the restaurants especially in the evening run out of reservations. On the first evening we sat in the room and rang and tried to make as many reservations as we could for the duration of the holiday. La Cantina is the restaurant within our hotel, we booked a table there so after collecting our luggage we could stay on site. The food was lovely and it was a big tex mex style buffet. We had chicken fajitas, ribs, potatoes and lots of salad options. We were really impressed. Heads up, you can eat in any of the Disney hotels restaurants even if you are not staying in that particular hotel. I think this is great as all of the hotels have different themed restaurants so if you do not want to walk into the Disney village, you can just stroll to the next hotel along from you.

For breakfast everyday we ate in our hotel. It was very efficient service and we were happy with the wide range of food options available. They have everything you could want for breakfast with hot options as well as continental.

Agreibar was an Aladdin themed restaurant which was a buffet. We booked this for convenience and a buffet is always a great option if you do not want a massive lunch. In here we ate meat kebabs and vegetables. In all honesty I found the food a little limiting, but what I ate was lovely. Most of the buffets throughout Disneyland are priced at 34.99 euros. On the standard meal plan all of the 34.99 euros buffets are included on the list so you do not have to pay anything extra.

Booking to go to The Steakhouse was one of the best decisions we made. We wanted something a little fancier and we loved it here. It was definitely our favourite night time meal out of all the nights. When we booked we checked we could use the meal plan. We were told we were able to and we could eat/drink 30 euros worth. There is no denying the food is expensive in this restaurant. I ordered the chicken which has a peppercorn sauce with mash and it tasted really nice. The only thing I said was that a portion of vegetables would have been a finishing addition. Both of our meals were 29.99 euros each, so when the bill came we just had to pay 5 euros each for our soft drink.

When we went into Paris for the day we only needed an evening meal. This was the only meal we had not pre-booked so after the fireworks we decided to get into the queue for Annette's diner. The queue didn't look too long, but we soon regretted it. It must have taken at least 45 minutes for us to get a table. In all honesty I would have rather had gone back to our hotel and eaten in La Cantina again. I had a hot dog which was average and we waiting a very long time for food. I think we ate around 9pm.

We went into the Studios on the fourth day. We had booked in at De Star Studios which was a very pleasant surprise and if I was to go there again I would definitely book here. It was a buffet but it had a fantastic selection of food. There was noodles, pasta, meats, cheeses, I ate so much and went back for seconds. So yeah a big thumbs up from me.

That evening we went to the Buffalo Bills wild west show which you can read all about. I go into depth in the post as to what you get to eat within your package. It is a three course meal which is mexican themed. You get chilli and nachos, then chicken, sausage and potatoes and then an apple pie to finish off. I liked the food here and I think it's good value for money.

On the last day we needed to leave the park around 5ish to make it back to the airport on time. We went to Plaza Gardens as we had heard it was a must. In all honesty this was the worst place in terms of selection of food we had experienced during the entire holiday. We came back to the table with half empty plates. It does however have great desserts which we filled ourselves up on. A little tip is that Plaza Gardens does breakfast with the characters every morning.  It is right next to Main Street so we would see them walking around the restaurant.

Overall, we were impressed with the food. If I was to go again I would definitely make sure we had some kind of meal plan as otherwise we would need to definitely take a lot of money with us. I would say that it would easily be 50 euros each a day just on lunch and tea without even considering any of the top range restaurants. We didn't eat in the more expensive food outlets such as Planet Hollywood as it was a lot of money. We kept contemplating about booking Cafe Mickey as this is where you can meet and greet characters. However the meal plan was over 70 euros and it was very basic food and I did not think we would be getting our money's worth. It would have meant us putting 40 euros each to the bill, and we decided it was a big extra expense.

It is definitely just about doing a bit of research before you go and finding places you would like to eat at within your budget or meal plan. There is also a McDonalds in the Disney Village, but once again the prices are much higher than your average drive-thru. What I was impressed with was the amount of eateries available. Like I say, my top tip is if you are on any kind of meal plan to ring and book all your meals in advance in one go. It means you can organise it around your itinerary in case you have any special time allocated plans throughout the day.


Sunday, 17 March 2019

Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show

As it was our first trip to Disneyland Paris, we wanted to do as much as we could. For Christmas I bought my sister and I tickets to Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. This is a live action show with horses and buffaloes. I bought these tickets before we went and the pricing is in two brackets. They have tier 1 and tier 2. I bought tier 2 which were £57 each which at the time I thought was quite a lot, but I am really glad I treated us to them as we both had a great time. 

There are two show times one at 6.30pm and one at 9.30pm. I chose to go for the 6.30pm slot as I thought the later time was a little too late. When you book your tickets you don't get given your seats there and then, you get them on the day. From 5pm you can go and queue and get your tickets, obviously the earlier you get there the better seats you get given. In all honesty I don't think there are any 'bad' seats. The arena is quite small and you will definitely be able to see wherever you get sat as it is all tiered. I definitely would not pay £70 for the tier 1 tickets. We got there at 6pm and we were given tickets for the green zone, which was on the left hand side of the arena. You also get given a cowboy hat to wear which has the colour of your team around the rim.

Before the show starts there is a small bar area where you can get drinks. There is also a stage where there are some singers and dancers, and Goofy made a surprise appearance. The show started bang on 6.30pm. Within the ticket price it includes a three course tex mex meal. As soon as the show starts the food starts to come round on your table, when you sit down you have a bowl of nachos and cornbread. The first course is chilli. They also come round with beer, coca cola and water. The second course was a large chicken leg, sausage and potatoes. The food does come round at quite a speed whilst the show is on, but there were a lot of people to serve and it was a finely tuned military operation. The dessert was apple pie and vanilla ice cream which tasted great.

The show is child friendly and action packed with a simple story line. They get people up from the audience and it definitely gets the crowd going. The arena is split into four teams of different colours and they do some team based games which got quite competitive, with everyone taking their cowboy hats off and swinging them around depending on who won. The show also contains many much loved Disney characters included Mickey, Minnie and Goofy, and my new favourites Chip n Dale.

All in all, if you are going to Disneyland Paris and want a bit of an extra treat this was great fun. I wouldn't now book to go again as I think once you have seen it, there is no need to go again as I doubt the story line changes a great deal. I think £57 is a lot of money for the show, but it was feel good and we both had a great night.


Wednesday, 13 March 2019

Top tips for first time visitors to Disneyland Paris

Before I went to Disneyland Paris, I was researching left, right and centre everything I wanted and needed to know about the place. This got me thinking that on my return I was going to put together a little guide for first time visitors with all my top tips.

My sister and I stayed in the Santa Fe hotel and when we checked in at the reception we were presented with two cards. The key to everything we needed for our holiday. They were magic passes, which were great on the back they had our name, hotel and what meal plan we were on. She activated them there and then and it also served as our key for our hotel. It was very handy to have everything in one place. When my sister had visited about 10 years ago, they were given meal vouchers for each day. I am so happy they have accumulated everything onto one pass as it makes everything so much easier. This was also your golden ticket into both parks, you just held it against the monitor and you were in.

I briefly mentioned this in my first post that we opted for the full board standard meal plans. This meant on each of our cards we had uploaded 4 breakfasts each and 8 meals per person to use whenever we wanted. This would be really good if you had children as your whole booking goes on to the adult cards. For example, my sister could go and buy us both lunch using two of the uploaded meals and pay just on her card, and it be would deducted off both of our totals. We bought lanyards and the card holders (which is in the picture), it was really convenient rather than having to consistency go in and out of your bag to find your card.

Let's talk extra magic time. This was something which I did not know about until we got there. Basically if you are staying in any Disney hotel you get extra magic time. Both of the Disney Parks open at 8.30am to anyone staying in Disney accomodation, meaning you get an extra hour and a half before the park opens at 10am to everyone. We ensured we made the most of this time every single morning. You can get fast passes go on the rides which usually have the longest queues or go to meet and greets.

I had quite a bit of uncertainty as to how to make the most out of my visit, I knew that I wanted to do meet and greets with the characters. As I have just mentioned during extra magic time it is definitely worth heading to the Princess Pavilion. Everyday from 10am the queue for the meet and greet with the princesses was two hours+. We used our extra magic time on two mornings to meet Ariel and Snow White. When we got to the pavilion at approximately 8.45am the queue was somehow already 60 minutes. However, it was much better than 2 hours and it was done and dusted for the day then. We also used this time to get fast passes for the day. You can get a morning slot on one of the most in demand rides and it would save a lot of time and queuing.

If I was to go again I would definitely not spend as much time at meet and greets as they can be a little soul destroying. You don't get told an approximate time of how long the wait is and it is all a guessing game. Meet and greets take place at particular places within the parks. For example Aladdin is in Adventureland, however there might be any of the characters from that story line e.g. Aladdin, Jasmine, Genie and Jafar when you get there as they swap throughout the day. At each station they have displayed the times of when there will be a character there. We queued to meet Alice and The Madhatter and it was the longest queue ever. It must have been over an hour and although I love the pictures I would not do it again. It was crazy and the queue just did not seem to be moving. You find at some they are quick e.g. Jessie, the queue moved fast, the photos and autographs were done whilst still meeting the queue one by one but in a timely matter.

I mentioned briefly in my first post that we went to meet Buzz Lighting and we were told that this was a reservation only meet and greet. As with every worker at Disneyland Paris the lady was very polite and informed me that you need to go onto an app called Lineberty, and everyday they have a certain amount of slots for their meet and greet characters. At 10am every morning the slots go live and you have to go on a grab a slot. There was a lady who said she had tried at 10.15am the day before and they were already all taken. Therefore, on the last day as we were trying to utilise as much time as possible, we went on at 10am and managed to snatch a slot. You get given a number with an approximate waiting time as to when your slot will be ready. Me and my sister kept checking my app and it said approximately one hour so we decided to get into a queue for a ride. The app all of a sudden notified me to say our slot had become available. We were not sure how long they allocated us after the notification came through so we headed there straight away. When we got there we showed them our number and we went straight into the small queue, it took approximately 10 minutes to get to the front. On the app you are able to get slots for certain characters in the Disney Studios, they are Spider Man, Mickey and friends, Buzz Lightyear and friends and Woody and friends.

Fast passes are passes which you can get for rides which are the most in demand. This work wonders and I would definitely be encouraging every visitor to make use of them. The concept of how they work is really simple. From 10am every day you can go to these rides and get a fast pass from a machine, it will have on it an allocated time e.g. 10-10.30am. There is a certain allocated amount of passes given within each period of time, and then once there are all used it will click over to the next allocated amount. It works really well. We first used these on Thunder Mountain on our first day and the normal queue for 2 hours, but with our fast pass we were on and off within 20 minutes. There is a separate queue for fast pass users which moves at a much quicker rate than the normal queue. Although, for the most in demands rides even if you get there before mid day you may only get a fast pass for 5pm, so if I advise getting them as soon as you can. You can get a new fast pass every two hours or after you have used your previous one.

The rides in the Disneyland Park which have fast passes are Indiana Jones, Hyperspace Mountain, Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast, Big Thunder Mountain, Peter Pan's Flight and Star Tours. In Disney Studios they are Rock 'n' Roller Coaster, Tower of Terror, Ratatouille and Aladdin's Flying Carpets.

I would also highly recommend downloading the Disneyland Paris app. It is great as it tells you the show times for that day, the park opening times and it has the numbers on for customer services and table reservations. I found it the most useful to find out the waiting times for rides, there is a big map of the entire park and you can zoom in and out and find where you want to go. You can click on each on ride and it gives you the current waiting time. It has a cursor which you can flick through to find where entertainment, photo pass points, shops, restrooms and dining all are within the park. This helped us massively as it prevented us getting lost and we could go from one place to another quickly.

My last recommendation is to reserve your dining before you go. Me and my sister learnt the hard way, when we got there the receptionist suggested we ring and book all of our meals for all of our stay there and then. Over dinner on our first day we rang and made bookings for the four days we needed reservations. We didn't really have any particular places where we wanted to eat, so we just booked into a few different places with a variety of cuisines. The lady on the phone was struggling to fit us in at times that we wanted, but was extremely helpful and we managed to get in somewhere every lunch and tea. Our favourite eatery was The Steakhouse in the Disney Village.

One last little tip is that if you are on a standard meal plan like us, and you choose to eat in one of the restaurants which are not on the allocated list each meal has a worth of 29.99 Euros. This is great and means eating becomes more flexible, as most of the restaurants on the standard meal plans are buffets and we wanted something different. When we ate in The Steakhouse our food came to a total of 30 Euros each, when the bill came we just had to top up and pay for our drinks. I don;t think they make this particularly transparent, but for this reason I would not pay for a more expensive meal plan unless you have a particular desire to eat consistently in the more expensive premium restaurants. However, like I say you can use the worth of your meal plan and apply it in any restaurant.

I hope this has been a useful quick reference guide for any first time visitors. Having some of the inside knowledge can make you utilise your time so much better. Visiting for the first time can be a little overwhelming and it can be hard to figure out the best way to do things. If you have any other tips please feel free to share them.



Sunday, 10 March 2019

Disneyland Paris

I am not quite sure where to start with the Disneyland Paris post as all I can is I think this trip may have just changed my life. I have come back and it was honestly just what I needed. I always thought that relaxing on sunny beaches and taking time out was my way to recuperate, but after this trip I have had my mind changed.

We got the first flight out of Manchester on the Wednesday and arrived in Paris Charles de Gaulle at 9.30am. My sister had visit Disneyland Paris once before which made things a little easier. We booked the package through Disneyland themselves and we added on the magic shuttle service there and then. I think it was £22 each but I would definitely pay it again as the service was seamless. The magic shuttle picked us up from the airport, and we were very lucky as one had just arrived. They run on an hourly service and they do have a timetable which you can look at. The shuttle can take you to any Disneyland or associated hotels. We were very lucky as out hotel was the second drop off, and the whole journey only took 40 minutes. I know there are other alternative cheaper ways to get to Disneyland, but this was easy, convenient and saved time.

We stayed in the Santa Fe hotel which was one of the cheaper hotels within the resort. My sister and I were not bothered about paying a lot for a hotel as we knew we would be spending minimal time there. The hotel was great as it was Cars themed and I loved the decor throughout. The process of check in was simple, as we were not sure how everything would work. We were presented with magic passes where the receptionist explained that all of our bookings and the key for our room were on our card. This was so convenient as everything we needed was on this little card.

We decided to choose the full board option meal plan which I would definitely recommend. I had done quite a bit of research before booking, and a lot of comments were made about the price of food within the parks. We stayed for four nights and we had on our magic passes breakfast for 4 days and 8 meals each. It was really good as we had booked mine and my sisters under one booking, each magic pass had all the meal plans for the total holiday. For example, mine and my sisters had 16 meals on them so I could get both of our lunches on my pass and it would then deduct on both cards so there would be 14 left to use.

We checked in and we already knew that the room would not be ready until 3pm. We were able to hand our luggage in to a secure baggage unit and start to explore. From the Santa Fe to the entrance of the park it was a 15 minute stroll, it was a lovely walk along the riverside and you got to see all of the other hotels on the journey.

We headed into the park and once we were in and entered Main Street I was overwhelmed. I had seen beforehand many pictures, videos and adverts for the park, but it was absolutely magical. I was literally taken aback and felt a little overwhelmed. We had decided before going we wanted to do everything possible with our visit including meet and greets. On this first day we decided to just basically explore. It was mesmerising taking everything in and it a lot bigger than I thought it was going to be. We managed to do a few meets and greets, and get on some of the bigger rides in the Disneyland Park itself. That night we watched the fireworks for the first time and I swear it was worth going just to see them. If you go the fireworks are my absolute icing to the cake, they went on for 20 minutes and it just kept getting better and better!

When people say make use of the magic time, they mean make use of it! We were up at 7.30am everyday, having breakfast for 8ish and heading into the parks for 8.30-8.45am. Any person staying in any Disney hotels gets magic time which is where you get to go into the parks at 8.30am and make use of the park, before it opened to the public come 10am. We mostly used this time to get fast passes and meet the must have characters. The queue for the princesses most days was over 2 hours, on the second morning we met Ariel and the queue was 60 minutes.

On the second day we decided we would once again head into the Disneyland Park, to do everything which we had been unable to do on day one. We explored the shops and I bought my purple potion ears, which were permanently glued to my head after this. It was a beautiful day the sun was shining, and we watched the princess vs pirates parade, which was just sensational. Like I say, you see and hear about these things but everything was step ahead than what I thought. We made sure that we watched the princess parade that evening and it was everything I expected and more. That night we ate a beautiful meal in The Steakhouse which was truly delightful.

On the Friday, we went into Paris for the day as this was something which we had always planned to do. We once again got up early and headed for the train. You can easily get into the Paris from the Disneyland park where there is a train station called Chessy. The train took approximately 45 mins to get into Paris. We made the most of the day and I cannot wait to bring you my Paris post. We made sure we got the train back just in time to make the fireworks as we just could not miss them. We asked at the park and the last entrance is 7pm before they close it for the fireworks.

We knew that the parks were going to be super busy on the Saturday, but we had scheduled to go to the Walt Disney Studios this day. I was not sure how what to accept from this park as I feel as though it just had not received the same hype. When we arrived I was like how did I not know about this place?! That morning I had said to my sister I feel as though the Disneyland Park itself needed a few more 'big' rides, and this definitely filled that void. There were so many rides I wanted to go on and we didn't know where to begin. We headed to get a fast pass for Crush's coaster as we heard that it always has a huge wait. We then went on Hollywood's Tower of Terror which I was terrified about, and I think I still need to go and retrieve my stomach from the top of the lift! Rock n' Rollercoaster definitely filled our need for that adrelining junkie feeling. We also did some more meet and greets in this area.They have live shows in this area such as Stitch Live, which is great for the kids. which This night we went to Buffalo Bills Wild West Show, which was fantastic. It cost 57 Euros each, but it was great and it included a three course meal.

Sunday was the last day of our Paris adventure. We planned to do whatever we had left on our list. Up and out early we headed to the meet and greet Princess Pavilion, we met Snow White this time the 60 minute expected wait was a little longer. We then watched the princess and pirates parade one last time. The day before we had wanted to met Buzz Lightyear but it was an organised meet and greet only, so we made sure we got a slot and went over to the Walt Disney Studios again. We were really disappointed as we had wanted to go the Ratatouille ride, but the wait was always two hours plus and we just did not have the time that day to fit it in. We headed back to the Disneyland Park where we headed to Discoveryland where we went on Star Wars Hyperspace Mountain, and this was such a pleasant surprise as I really loved this ride. Our plane home was at 8.50pm so we had planned to get on the magic shuttle back to the airport at 6pm. We left the park at 5pm and headed to get our luggage and make sure we were not running late. Everything went just about smoothly, except there was a bit of traffic on the motorway. Thankfully the airport was half empty, but it was definitely a rush as we didn't realise quite how big the airport was. We had to get on some kind of internal metro to get to our terminal! 

As you can probably tell I had the best time ever. I am already dyingggggg to book my next trip. There is so much more for me to write about over the next few weeks. I will be writing posts about my top tips for first time visitors, the best shops, where we ate and Buffalo Bills!



Sunday, 3 March 2019

Revolution Pro Foundation Drops

I have seen quite a few high end brands bringing out foundation drops and I was excited when Revolution had released their own version. The Revolution Pro Foundation Drops are only £5 which is a pinch of the price of some of the high end versions which I have seen have been £25+.

This has a water-based formula hoping to create a flawless finish on the skin. They say to use a few drops for a sheer wash of colour or you able to layer it up to build a more natural full coverage. I find you can add the drops to lighter foundations which is great as it can be difficult to get your perfect amount of coverage. These come in 18 shades I choose the colour F5 as it looked like a good match for my skin, however on application to my skin it is a little too dark. It is suppose to be for light skin tones with pink undertones, but this looks more of a match for a medium skin tone. I think F4 or even F3 would be a more suitable shade.

I have really enjoyed using these drops and I have mostly been using them on their own. I apply 3-4 drops onto my damp beautyblender and buff the foundation into my skin. The formula has a thin, fluid- like consistency which means it is easy to move around the skin. However, once in place I find that I do not have much time to blend and I have to get the job done as quickly as possible. As always I apply both a moisturiser and primer before any foundation to prep my skin the best I can. I think this is perfect if you like a light to medium coverage, which is all new territory to me as previously I have only ever worn full coverage foundations. I think you would struggle to build this up to be a full coverage foundation based on its watery thin consistency.

For £5 if you are on board with this concept I think these drops from Revolution would be a great place to start. My skin does not feel heavy which I love as it feels breathable. It almost feels as though I do not have any foundation on at all. The finish to this is definitely more on the dewy side rather than matte, which is always my personal preference due to my dry skin.

Even though I have really enjoyed using this, it has not become my favourite go-to everyday foundation. I do wear it often but not every day, and it has not yet made in to my top ranking three foundations as it takes a lot to make it in to those fixtures. I am definitely going to continue using these foundation drops as like I say I have enjoyed using them. I am very picky with my foundations and to make it into my makeup drawers it take a lot so this has done well!


Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Too Faced Hangover Primer

I have never been one to invest in primers or have much interest in them. I bought the Too Faced hangover primer a few months ago and I have really loved using it. Since my skin is still fragile and sensitive from my roaccutane treatment, I have been very cautious with the skincare I have put on my skin. This has been an excellent addition into my routine. I apply my trustworthy Kiehl's oil free moisturiser and then I apply this primer on top. It has a thin cream consistency which has a pleasant coconut and fruity scent to it which I find very refreshing and not too overbearing. It applies easily on to the skin and blends in beautifully giving my skin a light luminous glow.

It adds a level of hydration and helps to replenish moisture which exactly what my skin craves. It is naturally very dry, and it needs all the additional hydration that is possible. They claim this is down to probiotic based ingredients combined with coconut water. I think primers are properly put to their test with how they perform with base products. I have used primers in the past which have not settled well with my foundations, but this one was perfect. It has the tiniest amount of stickiness to its texture which is why this does so well as it creates a great base. Overall, I am definitely going to be repurchasing this as I have been really happy with how it looks and feels, and how it combines with my foundation. I use my fingers to apply the primer, and then blend my foundation in with my beautyblender.

As always I think it important to discuss the price. I would definitely consider this a high end product, as it is £27 for 38g. This has surprisingly lasted me a long time as I only use two small droplets for my entire face; therefore a little goes a long way. If a product works well for me it is something I am willing to invest in.



Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Primark Liquid Glitter Eyeshadows

In 2018, so many glitter liquid eyeshadows were released and at first I was a little dubious as to whether I was going to love or hate them. Lots of brands both low and high end started to bring them out, but I was still unsure whether to invest or not. Then as always good old Primark jumped on the band wagon and I thought it was time to try them. I featured Primark's beauty range quite a few times last year. Primark is known for duping every must have fashion piece, and they have branched out into beauty. One of their most impressive products was their dupe of Huda's nine quad palettes, which I wrote a post about which you can read here.

Primark's beauty Instagram page is where they post all of their new releases and when I saw their glitter liquid eyeshadows I knew it was time to invest. They are only £3 each which I thought was such an excellent price. I thought even if they were rubbish at least I hadn't spent a lot of money. As always with these must have products and with Primark's weekly turn around they were hard to find.

I bought two different glittery shades silver and pink. I think there are three in the line but at my local store there was only these two available. I did purchase these in December which meant it was perfect for me to put them to the test during the festive period. I tried them straight away as soon as I had bought them. I was intrigued what the consistency and glitter was going to look when applied to my eyes. I like the small flat doe foot applicator as it makes the product easy to apply.

I first applied this without any eyeshadow or base as I was wondering if I could apply it straight on to my eyelids. I found that it was hard to get an equal layer, and the consistency was quite thin and very fluid like. I was going on a night out a few weeks later so I thought I could properly put them to the test then. On the night I was going out I wanted to be able to put them fully through their paces, so I put the P.Louise eyeshadow base followed by a nude eyeshadow from the Urban Decay 3 palette to create a solid base. I first applied silver, which is very confusing as I can 100% confirm this is a light gold champagne shade. Like I have said the formula is quite wet, much more than what I thought it would be. I had a bit of a love/hate relationship with the eyeshadow at this stage. I found that the wet consistency allows you to try and get an equal coverage. However, I have to stand with my eyes fully closed whilst it is still drying as if your eyes are even slightly open it transfers everywhere, which I found out firsthand can become very messy. Once the eyeshadow has completely dried which doesn't take too long, I was impressed with how it looked.

I also tested out the shade pink, which I once again can confirm is definitely a rose gold and has very little 'pink' in it. This has a slightly thicker formula and pigmentation than the other shade. They worked exactly the same in terms of application and consistency. Pink certainly has more colour running through it, as it is a much darker shade. Once dried I found the colour pay off good, but with both shades it felt a little bit gritty on my eyes. The glitter aspect is surprisingly good and is a stand out part of the product. Although, once on the eye I felt as though it emphasised the creases on my eyelids despite my base. To finish the look I applied some eyeliner and lashes. Overall, I felt as though the glitter eyeshadow stayed put throughout the night and didn't budge.

The packagings of these are very much like the Stila ones as they have the same rectangular shaped plastic bottle. The only difference is that these have a glittery lid, whilst Stila's is a matte gold. You get 4.5ml which I did not think is going to last very long at all, but I will wait and see.

I have worn both of these at least three times now as I just could not make my mind up as to how I felt about them. There are definitely some really good parts to the formula and how they look. But, I also feel as though they have some negatives and there is definitely room for improvement. Trying these ignited my urge for wanting to try out more glitter liquid eyeshadows. I have heard that the Stila ones are the best ones out there to try, but they are pretty costly. I would not wear these on a daily basis to work or to pop to the shops, so it would be a big cost to only wear now and again. When I go out I love the idea of a night time glitter eye and these liquid eyeshadows tick the boxes of wanting that going out-out look without having to spend a fortune.



Sunday, 17 February 2019

Mac Fairly Precious Blush

MAC holds a special place in my heart since my teen years. I remember having my first MAC makeover age 18 and falling in love with the brand. On that day I purchased a blush named Margin, which I have bought time and time again over the past 6 years as it is my must have. During my last makeup clear out I realised that blushes were really lacking within my collection. I had two or three blushes which I reached for over and over again, and I wanted to branch out and buy something to jazz up my blushing game.

I went to MAC and went on a swatching marathon and fairly precious instantly stood out to me. It comes from their extra dimension range, which is part of their liquid-powder collection. This is very much a new concept to me. Basically, it is a mixture of combining the smooth consistency of a cream blended with the finish of the powder. This is supposed to give a second-skin finish, which I love.

It says I can use it wet or dry. I have to say I have never applied any blusher wet before, but I am always open to trying new concepts. The shade is a light pinky champagne which is perfect for my skin tone as I don't like a blush which is too heavy or dark. I also think this has that perfect amount of shimmer. I do not like it when blushes or any makeup item in fact contain chunky pieces of glitter. When I am doing my makeup no matter what season it is I like that glowy, fresh look to my skin and a little shimmer in your blush never does any harm

MAC has definitely put up its prices over the years, but hasn't all high end beauty brands? This cost £23 which I know is a lot of money for one blusher, however blushes last a long time for me. I always get a good few years out of one, so I see it as a product which gets its money worth. I have always found that with MAC blushes a little goes a long way. You will probably be getting the impression that I really, really like this, and that's because I do. I have been reaching for it on a daily basis for the last few months since adding it to my beauty stash. Like I say I don't own many blushes and this was the perfect addition and filled that blusher hole that was in my life.

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