Monday, 31 December 2012

2013 Beauty, Health and Life Resolutions

It's that time of year again. Time to put away the Christmas decorations and make some plans for the year ahead. I love starting a new year. It's a blank slate. Clean and fresh. It's the perfect time to wave goodbye to past mistakes and take on the year with a whole new approach.

Who knows what the year ahead holds for any of us. By this time next year any one of us could be married, have a new job, a new house, realised our greatest dreams. We have no idea. And that's what I love about this period between Christmas and the beginning of the next year.

2012 was a funny year for me. It feels like it's been a stop gap, I haven't really achieved anything major but I've made a few personal changes and made some decisions that might not be obvious to those around me but definitely make me a more contented person.

I've been thinking about my resolutions for the year ahead and, while some are big projects/changes, many are little adjustments that I've been wanting to make for a while. Rather than just resolving to do new things or stop bad habits I've also put in a few aims to just carry on doing something that I'm already doing well. Like managing my money properly, for example.

So, here is the full list (minus the reading/writing goals, which you can find on my other blog tomorrow if you're so inclined):


  • Experiment more with eye and lip colours (I'm terrible for sticking to the same look all. the. time.)
  • Carry on with my current skincare routine
  • Drink more water (as always)
  • Realise that skincare involves my whole body and not just my face
This has nothing to do with any resolutions. I'm just excited I saw the gold postbox!

  • Carry on being careful with money (as I work part time I don't have the biggest income in the world so, while my job is fairly well paid, I do have to be careful!)
  • Buy little and often rather than a huge splurge
  • Sell more things on eBay (I have over 100 items of clothing set aside to go on eBay so now I just need to actually list them)
  • Get my tax return done and dusted early (I do freelance copywriting from time to time so this year I have to do my own taxes - it's a little bit nerve wracking so I want to make sure I get it done as soon as possible!)

Diet and fitness:

  • Exercise more regularly - hit the gym at least three times per week (I want to keep my workouts varied and fun to stop myself getting bored. I also want to start doing daily yoga at home again)
  • Get into a healthy eating plan that I enjoy (and nail portion control!)
  • Treat myself for every health and fitness goal I meet (something small and not food related)
  • Be the dress size I want to be by my next birthday (I'm giving myself a year to get into the exact shape I want to be in. I definitely have a long way to go but I feel ready to really put the effort in... fingers crossed!)
No more of this!

  • See more of my local area (I live in such a lovely part of the world but I definitely don't explore it enough. I have a whole list of little towns and villages near me that I want to visit throughout the year)
  • Give myself more 'me' time and time away from the Internet
  • Slow down, stop putting pressure on myself and enjoy life a bit more (throughout 2012 I had so many projects on the go, it was the busiest year of my life and I feel as though I didn't enjoy myself so I want 2013 to be more relaxed and a lot more fun)
So there you have it, my resolutions for 2013. What's on your list?

Happy New Year, everybody!

Sunday, 30 December 2012

Spring Wishlist: New Look

So a few of the shops have started to release previews of their Spring 2013 collections. While I'm not obsessed with following trends there are a fair few of the 2013 S/S trends that I genuinely love so I'm really excited to pick up a few bits and bobs that will be available in the shops soon. I'm planning on getting my mitts on anything with an Aztec print, pronto.

Of the shops I've had a look at so far, New Look definitely have one of the best upcoming collections. Everything is well priced, as always, and it all looks very wearable, which is a plus. I've put together a few of the things I'm most keen on here:

From the list above I'm definitely going to be picking up the boots, the skater skirt and the Hamsa T-shirt, though I'll probably go for the horse and ram skull T-shirts too. To have a closer look and find out the prices of these pieces (and the rest of the preview) have a browse of the New Look website here.

Which is your favourite out of the bits and bobs above? If I had to go for one I think I'd choose the Hamsa T-shirt, which is an absolutely ridiculous bargain at only £7.99!

Friday, 28 December 2012

FOTD: Christmas Edition!

So did you all have a truly lovely Christmas? I hope so! I hope you got to spend time with your nearest and dearest, overindulged on food and drinks and unwrapped lots of lovely presents. I was thoroughly spoiled, had the perfect day and have definitely overspent in the sales...oops!

I wanted to share my Face of the Day for Christmas evening; I got to try out some of the make up products I got as presents, including the Maybelline Fit Me Concealer, which is awesome - review coming soon!

Christmas face!

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Review: Coralista Lip Gloss

The new Benefit lip glosses have been on my radar for a while now and I’ve been desperate to try them out. However, as they’re on my birthday wishlist I haven’t been able to pick up the High Flyin’ Gloss set in case somebody’s already bought it for me – damn myself for being so organised with my present list.

I spotted a mini Coralista lip gloss on sale at Stand for Style a little while ago so snapped it up – I know I shouldn’t have waited but… Gah, I needed it! The gloss arrived nice and quickly and I tried it out straight away. I’m really, really pleased to say it’s just as lovely as I thought it would be.

The packaging is bright and interesting as with all other Benefit products and it’s a generous size for a mini gloss; perfect to carry with me in my handbag or shove into a make-up bag for a weekend away.

The Coralista gloss is a bright orangey coral colour, completely perfect to wear during the summer but I know I’ll be wearing it all through winter anyway. The formula is smooth and wonderfully non-sticky, so no fear of the dreaded hair/lip gloss/wind palaver that makes me so grumpy. There isn’t any shimmer in the colour, either, which I was pleased about as I’m not the hugest fan of shimmery glosses.

It glides on evenly and made my lips felt moisturised straight away. It stayed bright for a long time and took a while to sink in so I didn’t have to reapply as often as I do with most glosses, which made a nice change. This one looks absolutely gorgeous teamed with the Coralista blush and winged eyeliner.

Top: Without flash // Bottom: With flash

I really love this colour and the quality is great, exactly what I’d expect from Benefit. I’d definitely recommend this one and I can’t wait to get my hands on the other colours – especially Bella Bamba!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Birthday and Christmas Wishlist: Clothes

It's only FIVE days until my birthday and less than two weeks until Christmas - how the hell did it come around so fast?! I absolutely adore spending time with my friends and family over the festive season and getting to open up presents is also pretty nifty!

I'm a big clothes fiend, as you probably know, so a lot of the items on my birthday and Christmas wishlists are clothes, especially dresses, obviously! I've picked a few of my most wished for items and compiled them into this handy dandy little image below:

1. Matalan - Hybrid Coat // 2. New Look - Tall Black 1/2 Sleeve skater Dress // 3. Matalan - Sequin Placket Blouse // 4. Internacionale - Ivory Lace Shirt Dress // 5. Dorothy Perkins - Ivory Horse Print Fluffy Cardigan // 6. Matalan - Fairisle Print Christmas PJ Bottoms // 7. Matalan - Falmer Shirt // 8. New Look - White Fleetwood Mac T-Shirt // 9. River Island - Black Dogtooth Print Jersey Blazer
So what do you think? I'm desperate for the PJ bottoms to lounge about in while I have a few days off work and I'd love the Fleetwood Mac T-shirt, as Rumours is pretty much my favourite album of all time.

What's on your clothes wishlist this year?

Monday, 10 December 2012

Birthday and Christmas Wishlist: Make Up

So a week today is my birthday and, as you all know, soon after that comes Christmas. It's arrived so ridiculously quickly this year so I thought I'd share some of the make up items that are on my lists this year.

1. MeMeMe Beat the Blues in Oyster Gold // 2. Soap and Glory Glow All Out Luminizing Face Powder // 3. Bourjois Ombre a Paupieres Eyeshadow in Brun Irreel // 4. FashionistA Blush in London (I snapped and bought this early - oops!) // 5. FashionistA Eye Shadow in Globe (again... I snapped on this one too) // 6. MUA Extreme Felt Liner in Black // 7. MUA Brow Kit // 8. Revlon Just Bitten in Sweetheart // 9. Topshop Highlighter in Crescent Moon // 10. MeMeMe Goddess rocks // 11. Benefit High Flyin' Glosses Set // 12. NYC Smooth Proof Lip Stain in Persistent Pink // 13. Body Shop BB Cream in Light
What's on your make up wishlist this year? Do you own any of the items on my list?

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Superdrug 3 for 2 Haul

So I caved. I got sucked into the three for two madness and splurged a little. It's less than a week until my birthday and two until Christmas so I really should be saving my pennies but I couldn't help myself.

Here's what I bought:

Barry M Gelly Shine - Grapefruit // Barry M Gelly Shine - Prickly Pear // Barry M Gelly Shine - Watermelon
 These polishes have been on my wishlist for ages now and I keep seeing brilliant reviews of the collection, especially Prickly Pear. I do eventually want to buy the rest of the colours but these are the three I was most desperate for.

Barry M Gold Mine // Barry M Ruby // Barry M Amethyst
 I've been buying tooooo much Barry M at the moment but I can't stop! I've been wearing a lot of glitter over my usual polishes so I thought these three would make a nice addition to my collection. I quickly tried these over the navy varnish I already had on and they're absolutely gorgeous, though I think Amethyst is my fave - I'll be reviewing all of these soon!

Ghost Deep Night 30ml x 2
 This is one of my favourite perfumes ever and it's been way too long since my last bottle ran out. It is a little pricey so as soon as I saw the two for £30 deal I snapped them up straight away as one bottle is £23.50! It smells so lovely and not like anyone else I've ever tried; I wore this every day throughout my first two years of uni so every time I get a whiff it takes me back to hangovers and snakebites - bliss.

Rimmel Scandal Eyes - Purple // Rimmel Scandal Eyes - Nude
 I don't buy an awful lot of Rimmel products but I've always got one of their black eyeliners on the go so when I saw great reviews at The Bode Boutique and The Sunday Girl I decided to try these two. I've been using a white liner on my water line for a little while now but I think it can be a bit harsh so I'm definitely excited to try out the nude colour and see if it makes a difference.

MUA Starry Night Palette
 On my quest to purchase all of the MUA palettes (only four to go!) I picked up Starry Night. I think I'll get a fair amount of use out of this but some of the shades seem to be very similar, as you can see in the picture. I'll reserve judgement until I swatch them properly, though.

FashionistA Eyeshadow - Cosmic // FashionistA Blush - London // FashionistA Eyeshadow - Globe
 These are the first FashionistA products I've picked up and I'm so excited to try them. The colours are so vivid and bright and I quickly swatched them on my finger and they're super pigmented. The blush is a little brighter than I usually wear so I'm interested to try it out soon, maybe when I'm getting ready for a night out. The capital A in FashionistA really bothers me... is it only me?

In my parcel Superdrug kindly included a couple of perfume samples for Hugo Boss and Hugo Boss Nuit. I haven't opened either yet but I had a sniff of Hugo Boss Nuit through the bottle and it smells pretty good!


So maybe I purchased a few bits and bobs that I don't realllllly need but I'm really chuffed with everything I got and I can't wait to try everything out properly. Did you pick up anything in the 3 for 2 sale? Do you think there were any products I missed out on buying? Let me know!

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Review: Dr Lipp's Original Nipple Balm for Lips

A few weeks ago it felt like I couldn’t visit a blog without seeing a review of Dr Lipp’s Original Nipple Balm. Everybody seemed to be raving about and I have to admit I’d never even heard of the product – though the reviews piqued my interest and I checked out the website. After reading up on the history of the brand and the tonnes of uses for the balm I was sold. I knew I needed it in my life and promptly popped it on my birthday wishlist.

Before I could start dropping hints to my boyfriend, however, the lovely folks over at Dr Lipp sent me a tube of the wonder balm to review and I’ve been using it ever since it arrived. I’m genuinely shocked at the difference it’s made to my lips and it’s absolutely a product I’ll be repurchasing when I finally run out. I pop it on my lips last thing at night and first thing in the morning and it keeps them moisturised and healthy-looking all day. 

Like most people I suffer from chapped lips in the winter but since I started using Dr Lipp’s my lips have been smooth and flake free. I’ve found this is great to apply before lipstick and it helps to keep the colour vibrant and long lasting…especially when I’m using a *ahem* budget lipstick that doesn’t last quite as well as I’d like!

Over the last few days I’ve also tried using this under my eyes and it’s made them lovely and soft – I’ve also dabbed this onto my elbows to combat dryness and I give it a bit fat thumbs up. Made from 100% lanolin, Dr Lipp’s Original Nipple Balm is completely natural and free from artificial scents and ingredients so it can be enjoyed by those even with sensitive skin.

I’d like to say a huge thank you to the chaps at Dr Lipp for sending me this nifty little balm, I’m a huge fan and I’m so happy to have found such a brilliant product to help my lips get through winter unscathed!

To pick up your own tube of Dr Lipp’s Original Nipple Balm for Lips head over to the Dr Lipp website, where you can find a list of stockists and to follow Dr Lipp on Twitter click here.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Review: MUA English Rose Mosaic Blusher

I’d had my eye on the MUA English Rose mosaic blusher for a long old time so I finally bit the bullet and purchased it when their awesome 35% off sale was going on. I’ve become a bit of a blusher fan of late so I couldn’t wait to try this out, as it’s actually the first mosaic blusher I’ve owned.

I’ve been so impressed with the MUA products I’ve used so far; they feel far better quality than they should be for their price tag and I haven’t had a dud yet. This blusher is one of the better products I’ve tried and I’m now on the hunt for more mosaic blushers – anybody have any they recommend?

The blusher is made up of numerous shades, from pearly peaches to bronze and rose tones. I prefer to swirl my blush brush across the whole pan to get the full mix of colours but I’ve tried concentrating my brush into the lighter shades, which products more of a highlighter effect, which is quite pretty.

The powder is so soft but really keeps its shape, so there’s no blurring between the different colours. Not that I’ve noticed yet, anyway, but I have only used this a few times. I have noticed it fades a little after a few hours but the staying power is pretty impressive – especially when you consider this will set you back a lowly £2.50!

The colours aren’t particularly pigmented so this is a product you’ll need to build up. That can be a good or bad thing, depending on your tastes but it suits me well as I prefer to start off with a paler colour and build up, especially as I can be prone to slapping on a bit too much blush and ending up a little 80s music video…not good!

On the left you can see how this looks in natural light (that was taken six or so hours after application) and on the right is the blush photographed in artificial light (taken just after about 6.30am, which is why I look so blimmin' cranky. Literally giving my camera evils).

There is a fair amount of shimmer in this blush which I like but I know it’s not everybody’s thing. I think this one would also look great as a highlight on top of a deeper blush for a night out. All in all I’m a big fan of the English Rose blush and I’m looking forward to trying MUA’s mosaic bronzer next.

You can pick this one up from the MUA website or in Superdrug stores or online for £2.50.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

On My Wishlist: New Look (1)

I can be quite up and down when it comes to New Look; sometimes I think their collections are gorgeous and my wishlist is full of their items but sometimes it all just feels so samey and there isn't much to hold my interest. I'm not completely blown away by what they're stocking at the moment but there are a few things that I'm really, really itching to buy.

New Look always do good cardigans, I think, and I'm a huge fan of their shoes as their heels are so comfy. You can always pick up a great bargain in their sales so I'm really looking forward to raiding their website post-Christmas to try and snap up some great deals. Hopefully I'll be able to nab a few of these bad boys, as these are the current items at the top of my New Look wishlist:

1. Red Jacquard Print Tea Dress   2. Sliver and Blue Peace Wing Charm Earrings   3. Olive Stud Slipper Shoes   4. Limited Black Suede Glitter Chunky Heel Shoes   5. Red and Black Cross Print Jumper   6. Khaki Contrast Leather Look Sleeve Jacket   7. Navy Velvet 1/2 Sleeve Skater Dress   8. Mink Structured Wing Tote Bag

I'm most desperate for the earrings, the olive studded shoes and the winged tote bag, so I may snap and order these ASAP, although I know as soon as I do they're bound to get discounted so I should really hold out... we'll see! I'd love to order the red and black cross jumper but I've learned the hard way that I high neck is not the most flattering for my ample bosom...

I have been lusting after these earrings for a while but I know I have all the supplies and tools to knock up a similar pair myself, it's just so much easier to part with £2.99 to buy them rather than put in the effort to make them. Good lord, I am one lazy so and so!

Do you like the look of any of these items? If so, which ones are at the top of your wishlist?

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

DIY Inspiration: Studs

I love studs. I love studs, I love rivets, I love spikes. I also love DIY projects so studding everything I own is pretty much a dream project for me. You can pick up studs and rivets for next to nothing on eBay, which makes is an extremely cheap way to transform an item of clothing or a bag that is looking a little sad and lacklustre.

If you feel like trying studding for yourself there are a tonne of tutorials out there on various DIY blogs (Studs and Pearls and Honestly WTF are the two best out there, in my opinion) but, to get you started, here are a few current season items that might inspire you to give a bit of DIY a go:

                          1. Black vest   2. White vest   3. Black clutch   4. Mole boots   5. Burgundy jumper   6. Cream shirt   7. Pleather skirt

Or, you know, if busting your fingers studding the hell out of a jumper doesn't take your fancy you could just pick up one of the ready-made beauties above!

Are any of you folks fans of DIY fashion? What are you favourite kinds of projects to try out?

Sunday, 2 December 2012

NOTD: Barry M Racing Green

I've been buying a *lot* of Barry M nail polishes at the moment. I completely blame Superdrug's amazing 3 for 2 deal that they're running on all cosmetics...although, it does end on Tuesday so do hop over to their website to snap up any last minute bargains. I recently ordered a couple of the glitter polishes and also Racing Green, which I've had my eye on for a while now.

I love wearing deep shades on my nails during the autumn and winter and this colour is a perfect winter green. Very sumptuous and dark, it goes with so much and is very hard-wearing. I could have stopped at one coat as the colour is so vivid but I went for two and finished things off with a top coat. This photo was taken after three days and, as you can see, it's lasted very well.

Taken in natural light... And now I'm looking at this again it looks like the varnish is really badly chipped; it's actually the reflection from my light :)

I love this polish and I know I'll be wearing it a lot throughout the winter. It's such a gorgeous, rich colour that I can't believe it took me this long to purchase it!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

Welcome to Life from the Tub

Some of you may know me as Carly from Writing from the Tub, some of you may not know me at all. Either way, welcome to Life from the Tub - a new beauty and lifestyle blog, I hope you enjoy your stay, find something to interest you and come back again soon.

This is going to be my little corner of the Internet with no deadlines, no rules, no routine and I can't tell you how much I need this. I'm going to blog here when I have something to say that doesn't involve books and writing, so it could be once a week, it could be once a day - who knows, and that's part of what I'm so excited about. To run Writing from the Tub I do have to stay super organised, there are spreadsheets with so many tabs it's insane and release dates to bear in mind, interviews to write and tonnes and tonnes of books to read - I still adore it but I'm looking forward to being able to blog just for me, just when I want to.

Some of the things I'm planning on blogging about here are:

- Make up and beauty products
- Music, movies and TV shows that I love
- My foray into the world of crafting

- Holidays, parties, social events and the like

Ugh. First posts are always so awkward, aren't they? Let's just get this out the way so I can really start blogging!

Basically, all I really want to say is HI EVERYONE, I'll be back tomorrow with *actual* content.

P.S. He's a picture of a (my) cute hound in case you feel cheated by this quasi-blog post.