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Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Study Smart

If you saw Monday’s post, you’ll know that I’ve been reminiscing about my time at university. This time three years ago, I had just moved to the University of Surrey and was raring to go. I’ll admit, I’ve always been a bit of a geek, and I loved the idea of getting loads of new stationery and knuckling down to my studies. I’ll be honest with you, that didn’t last long. Once you get settled in, watching episode after episode of Gossip Girl and Pretty Little Liars seems a lot more fun than studying Austen and Dickens. But seeing as studying is such an integral part of university – who knew? – I tried to make studying as interesting as possible. Now, as a graduate, I thought I would share some products with you to try and make studying at university as easy and enjoyable as possible for you.
The ultimate goal for me was to make my work as interesting before. Admittedly, it is a little hard to do for English Literature, but if you add a little colour everything looks better, right? When writing my revision notes, I’d use multiple coloured pens to differentiate between points, and to emphasise key ideas. These Smiggle scented gel pens would fit the bill perfectly. With thirty colours to choose from, you can make your work as colourful as can be. For me, it made my work more interesting to look at, and easier to pick out the important information.
Staying on top of everything was central to my degree. In hindsight, I worked best when I mapped my work in chronological order. These Colour Change markers would have been a great help. I could have written the task in one colour, and then when I had completed it, used the colour changing marker to change the colour. This would have made completing a task a little more interesting – plus they’re so fun to play around with.
Now everyone needs a little relaxation when it comes to study time, and personally I loved a little bit of colouring. These Smiggle pencils would have been amazing, with so many colours to choose from. I can’t wait to crack these out next time I get the opportunity to do a little more colouring.
My key piece of advice? Keep organised! It’s so much easier to keep on top of everything and actually get some work done if everything is in one place. This little satchel from Smiggle is the perfect place to keep all your stationery together. And in uni accommodation, organisation is needed.
So, that’s my few tips on how to keep studying interesting. I think that keeping my stationery fun definitely made doing work that little bit easier.
Do you have any tips for studying? Any fun stationery bits that I should check out?
Until next time,

*The items in this post were sent to me for review - thank you Smiggle and Small Man Media. All opinions are my own.

Monday, 28 September 2015

University Thoughts

This weekend saw all the new Freshers move to the University of Surrey, and it got me feeling nostalgic. With my degree coming to an end this June, this was the first September in three years that I hadn’t packed up the car and shot down the A3 to Guildford. Although university wasn’t my favourite time, there were a lot of benefits and positives to the past three years, and I thought I’d share of these today.
New Picture (1)
1. Once I got used to the idea of being away from home, and my feelings of abandonment had subsided, I relished the independence I had. I had my own space, and could do almost anything I wanted whenever I wanted. If I wanted to stay up till 1am watching Pretty Little Liars again from Season 1, I could (I just might pay for it the next day). If I wanted to eat Spaghetti Bolognese every day for a week, I could. If I wanted to go shopping every day after lectures, I could – and often did, unfortunately for my bank balance. I learnt to do things for myself, and that has majorly impacted the person I am today. I’m a lot more confident doing things by myself, and I have no qualms about trying something new. Sure I still get a little nervous, but I can suck it up and get on with it because I know I can.
Photo credit Hollywood Reporter
Photo credit Hollywood Reporter
I ate a lot of pasta throughout my degree!
I ate a lot of pasta throughout my degree!
2. Having my own space was something I loved, again once I got over my homesickness. I’ve never had a problem with spending time alone, and having a room where I could just shut the door and ignore the world was great, especially once the stress of my dissertation hit. I learnt to really appreciate the opportunity to recharge my batteries with a bit of chill time, and it’ll definitely help when I get a little stressed in the future. Sometimes, some quality time with yourself is all you need.
I had some beautiful views from my rooms over the years
I had some beautiful views from my rooms over the years
I had some beautiful views from my rooms
I had some beautiful views from my rooms over the years
3. I’ve always loved reading, and English has been my favourite subject since I can remember, so the opportunity to study English Literature was exactly what I could have wanted. I was introduced to authors and genres of books that I would never have thought that I would enjoy, and my reading speed has increased immensely. I know that my degree has now broadened my literary horizons, and I’ll read so much more in my lifetime because of it. How geeky does that make me sound?
4. University not only gave me some new friends and strengthened some of my existing friendships. Being separated from my best friend was difficult, but we made sure that when we saw each other, we made the most of it. And now, as our lives get busier, we know our friendship is strong enough to withstand not seeing each other for weeks at a time. Some of the friends I made at uni will be lifelong friends, I’m sure. But my time at uni also helped me understand that I can’t be friends with everyone and I’m comfortable with that.
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5. I initially created my blog while I was at university. It was being away from home that got me into watching YouTube videos and reading people’s blogs and I thought that I’d like to give it a go. Admittedly, I didn’t fully get into it until the end of my degree, but I don’t think I would have contemplated starting a blog if it hadn’t been for my time at uni. So in some ways, there's the distinct possibility that if I hadn't gone to uni, I wouldn't have started LifeLoveLexie, and then where would we be?
L-R: Jess, me, AnnaSam
L-R: Brogan, Jess, Anna, me Photo credit Brogan
L-R: BroganJessAnna, me
Photo credit Brogan
So, while my time at university definitely had its low points, it definitely had its positives as well. My advice to any new Freshers who aren’t loving uni? Hang in there! It’ll get better, and trust me, once you’ve finished you’ll miss it a bit!
What were the positives from your time at uni? Do you have any advice for the new intake of Freshers?
Until next time,

Friday, 25 September 2015

Embracing Eyeliners

I’ve always stayed relatively safe when it comes to my eyeliner, usually sticking to a black wing. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t envy those who pull off some intense colours – I loved the turquoise liner Kim Kardashian-West has rocked in the past. Since turning 21, I’ve become a little more experimental with my makeup, just a little, and I’m taking a step towards some different liner.
The look that started it all Photo credit Allure
The look that started it all
Photo credit Allure
My first step into the eyeliner world was the Rimmel London Soft Kohl Kajal Eyeliner in Sable Brown. This was a nice way to ease myself into liner, with it being a neutral colour and a little softer than black.
Stepping a little further out of my comfort zone, I picked up the Kiko Automatic Precision Eyeliner and Kohl in 709 Forest Green and 714 Plum. While these are coloured liners – something I never thought I’d wear – they are still quite dark. They aren’t too far away from my trusty black liner, but do look funky and experimental.
Another eye liner offering from Kiko is the Modern Tribes Graphic Ritual Kajal Eyeliner in Gold (sorry this isn’t available, as it was limited edition). I picked this up during the summer, as I thought it would be a great addition to my summer makeup. Admittedly, this hasn’t had much use yet, but I definitely want to keep trying it – I think it’ll look fab for a night out!
The latest additions to my eyeliner stash are these Stay Perfect Amazing Eyes pencils from Boots No7 in Navy Blue and Deep Green. Like the Kiko Automatic Precision liners I picked up, these liners provide colour without being too daring. I like wearing both blue and green eyeshadow, as shocking as that sounds, so I thought these will be perfect additions to my makeup collection.
So, while I don’t use that much coloured liner at the moment, I definitely want to branch out a little more. I think they’ll add another dimension to my makeup, and hey, if Kim K-W can rock it, so can I right?
Do you different eyeliners? Do you have any recommendations for me?
Until next time,

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Charlotte Tilbury Haul

If you saw Monday’s post, you’ll know that I had my makeup done at Charlotte Tilbury in Selfridges. Now, it would have been nigh on impossible for me to try so many products and not buy anything. With the brand being one I’ve wanted to try for so long, I knew before I even got there that I was bound to buy something. It was inevitable right?
Now I loved the lipstick Paola, my makeup artist for the day, used on me – the Matte Revolution lipstick in Bond Girl. It is a gorgeous nude, something I’m not used to, with a nice blend of pink and brown tones. While the finish is matte, the formula isn’t too drying, which I always worry about with matte lipsticks. I can see this getting a lot of use in the future.
I also picked up the Lip Cheat in Iconic Nude. I am a lover of lip liners, and this one went on so smoothly. It blended with the lipstick so gorgeously, and I couldn’t walk away without it. I definitely think a lip liner makes all the difference in the longevity and colour of the lipstick.
I’m so happy with both of my purchases, and I have already used them both loads! The formulas of both the lipstick and the lip liner are gorgeous – I’m sure I’ll add more to my collection.
Do you own any Charlotte Tilbury items? What would you recommend? Or do you have a wishlist full of products to try? Let me know!
Until next time,

Monday, 21 September 2015

Charlotte Tilbury Makeover

Before the Bloggers’ Festival at the beginning of the month, I was lucky enough to accompany Jess to Charlotte Tilbury in Selfridges to get our makeup done. I was so excited about this – I’d had the odd product or two applied before, but never a full face of makeup, and this was the first time I had ever tried any Charlotte Tilbury products.
Barefaced Before Photo credit Jess
Barefaced Before
Photo credit Jess
When I arrived at the counter, I was introduced to my artist Paola, and I was given the opportunity to pick from one of Charlotte’s Ten Classic looks. While all of the looks were beautiful, I chose the Rock Chick look – I love a good smoky eye and cat-eye liner, so this was right up my street.
First step was the Multi-Miracle Glow, as a cleanser and mask, and then we used Charlotte’s Magic Cream. This smelt divine, and it left my skin feeling so soft. Paola then applied Wonderglow as a primer. This was amazing, giving my skin such a glow – I definitely think I’ll need to purchase this at some point!
I got the opportunity to try out the new Magic Foundation, in shade 3.5. This foundation felt lovely on the skin, and the colour match was ideal. Paola then applied the Retoucher in shade to highlight, and shade to conceal any spots – which I did have, unfortunately. We powdered with the Air Brush Flawless Finish powder, then moved on to the rest of the face.
I was so excited to try the new Magic Foundation
I was so excited to try the new Magic Foundation
Paola used the Film Star Bronze and Glow to contour, warm my skin, and highlight my cheekbones. This was a product I had had my eye on for a while, so I was so glad to get the opportunity to try it out. This gave a lovely glow to my skin, so it might have to be my next port of call after I’ve used my Smashbox contour kit! For blush, we used the Cheek to Chic Swish and Pop blusher in First Love. This gave just a nice flush to the skin, without competing too much with the eyes, which were the main focus of the look.
Paola filled in my brows with the Brow Lift in Brooke S, the medium shade, and then moved onto eyes, the fun bit. Paola used the Luxury Eyeshadow Palette in The Rock Chick to create a beautiful smoky eye. Usually I prefer brown shadows, as they tend to suit my eye colour better, but this was gorgeous and really stood out! I got compliments on my eyes all day! Paola added some winged liner with the Feline Flick Eyeliner Pen, which I was really impressed by. I normally struggle to get good enough colour payoff with an eyeliner pen, but this worked really well. Paola lined my eyes with the Bedroom Black Rock ‘n’ Kohl Eyeliner pencil, just to deepen the liner, and then added plenty of Full Fat Lashes. This mascara was amazing, giving length, volume and curl. Definitely one to try out!
Once the eyes were finished, Paola applied my lipstick. I’m not usually a great lover of nude lipsticks, but Paola suggested that a nude would be better over a bright, so that it didn’t compete with the eyes. In the end, Paola lined my lips with the Lip Cheat in Iconic Nude, and then we chose Matte Revolution lipstick in Bond Girl. This is a slightly deeper nude, similar to the Kylie Jenner lipstick shades that are popping up all over the place, and I love it! It was bold but still complimented the eyes, and it looked amazing all teamed together.
After Photo credit Jess
Photo credit Jess
Have you ever had your makeup done at a counter? Would you go to a counter in future? I certainly would! I hope you liked my finish look – I loved it!

Until next time,


Friday, 18 September 2015

Bloggers' Festival Goody Bags

Now that I've had the chance to sort through all the amazing goodies we were gifted at the Bloggers Festival, hosted by Scarlett on September 5th, I thought I would share with you some of what we were lucky enough to walk away with.
We all left with an abundance of goodies Photo credit Anna
We all left with an abundance of goodies
Photo credit Anna
I'm sure we all looked hilarious making our way home from London with all these bags - it was certainly interesting getting on the tube, I can tell you that for certain - but I was overwhelmed by the amount of products we were gifted, so that we could give them a go. There were so many brands at the event that I hadn't heard of before, as well as some that I was familiar, and I can't wait to try everything out!
My favourite bag from the event
My favourite bag from the event
So many goodies
The heaviest items in our goody bags from Scarlett were these two full size bottles of shampoo from OGX. I always see this brand in Boots, and I've tried a few of their different products, so I was really excited to get to try some more of their products. My hair is really fussy with shampoo at the moment, so hopefully one of these works wonders!
I haven't tried either of these before
There were loads of little products in our goody bags, but I'm particularly looking forward to trying out this Vita Min Fix 24-Hour Facial Cream and the Fruit Scrub Exfoliator from Green People - a brand I've never heard of, so this excites me. I'm also looking forward to using the Deep Heat Muscle Rescue cream. Having had a shoulder injury in my second year of university - not alcohol fuelled I promise - Deep Heat and I are good friends, and after carrying all these bags around, I was glad to have some!
Some other skincare items I picked up on the day were this Bravura London Dermaflannel, and a Bee Good Cream Cleanser and Muslin Cloth. I received one of these Bee Good cleansers in my Southampton Meetup goody bag, although I haven't got round to trying it yet - now I have two, which will be fab if I fall in love!
The Perfume Shop were around, handing out samples of Paco Rabanne perfume OlympĂ©a, which I popped straight into my goody bags. I've used this a few times, and it's such a beautiful scent. We were also given samples of BareMinerals Lash Domination mascara, and oh my goodness, it's glorious!
The ladies at Mode Media had so many goodies to hand out, all with their logo on. We had a choice of t-shirt, and I went with the "Fierce Mode", and I also picked up a notebook, a lip balm and a pencil.
Brodie and Stone gave us a selection of their skincare and haircare items. I'm always on the lookout for new items in these areas, so I can't wait to give all these a try.
Our personal mini consultations with Exuviance meant we walked away with a few goodies tailored to our skin type. I am so excited to try out the Purifying Cleansing Gel and the Hydrating Eye Complex. I already gave the Blemish Treatment Gel a go, and that seemed fab!
Small Man Media represent a range of stationery brands, and we were lucky enough to be given a selection of goodies. I got these awesome coloured pens - which will be perfect for my colouring book - a little notebook, and a great selection of Smiggle gel pens.
I was so excited when I was announced as a winner of one of the Bon Prix goody bags. I love the wooly hat they gifted me, and cannot wait for the weather to get cold enough for me to wear it. Prizewinners were also lucky enough to be gifted some little bits, including some hot chocolate, dry shampoo, and a nail varnish!
Thank you to Scarlett for organising such a great event, and putting together the amazing goody bags, and to the other brands who gave out their own goody bags.
Until next time,



Lexie's bookshelf: currently-reading

The F Word
tagged: currently-reading
tagged: currently-reading
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