Travel and lifestyle blog. Used to do beauty and throw some in for good measure now and again.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Mini Beauty Haul REN, Topshop, MaxFactor etc

Since my student loan has arrived in my bank account, I've been doing quite a bit of spending (oops). Forget paying rent; it's all about buying beauty products. Jokes. I am joking. I am heavily influenced by what my fellow bloggers are recommending so that's why I got most of these products really. Let me know if you have any of these products and if you like them!

REN Rosa Centifolia Hot Cloth Cleanser / £16 / Link - The last time I used a hot cloth cleanser is when Liz Earle was all the hype, but unfortunately it broke me out. Since then, I have been loving REN skincare so I thought it would be nice to try this one. It says this is for all skin types and I usually stay away from these kind of products but thankfully I bought it as my skin has really improved. I think this cleanser with a mix of a great diet has contributed!

Maybelline Color Drama / £4.99 / Link - Labelled as dupes for the NARS lip pencils, they are pretty velvety, smooth and not at all drying. They don't come off quickly either and for the price, they are a pretty good deal!

MAX FACTOR Face Finity 3 in 1 Foundation / £11.99 / Link - This foundation isn't really raved about but I thought I'd try it, as one of my friends loves it. It's a primer concealer and foundation all in one apparently. It stays on very well so I can believe the primer part and it has a medium coverage. Not really sure why they say it's a concealer, but it does cover blemishes quite well. 

Maybelline Eraser Eye Concealer / £7.99 / Link - When I see a stunning beauty guru use a product, it instantly makes me want to buy it. This is something I've seen a couple of gals wear and it's a really nice product.

Topshop All Over Glow / £10 / Link - Amelia Liana raved about this liquid illuminator and I knew I had to have it. You can mix it in with your foundation or simply apply to the top of your cheekbones. I got the golden shade as it warms up my complexion and is just generally 'glowy'. 

Hope you liked this mini haul! Coming soon is a make-up tutorial which includes GIF's of how I applied my make-up and I really like how it turns out so look out for that one!

Lots Of Love,

Saturday, 24 January 2015

Beat the January Blues | Pamper Yourself

As part of my 'Beat the January Blues' post, here is my blog post on pampering! Every girl loves a nice evening in, spending time to yourself and getting a nice looong bath. Here is where I choose what to put in my bath...

To relax in the bath, some sort of product is almost neccesary. Obviously, a Lush bath bomb would be a popular option and I'm not sure what the one photogrpahed is called but it smells incredible!
The night I took the photos I used my Himalayan Detox Bath Salts. Priced at £37, they aim to be a sort of 'natural valium' as they aim to beat insomnia which I sometimes struggle with when important occasions come around (exams etc). So far they've definitely worked in the fact they have made me feel so relaxed and at peace, but we'll have to see if they help the night before my exam haha! They suck all the radiation out of your body that you may get from phones and laptops in order to free your body of toxins. They're very pricey but I recommend you give them a go for ultimate relaxation hence ultimate beating the January blues!

Whether you're in the bath or not, a candle is holy grail. I love candles by The Body Shop as they do some very nice fruity scents. If you're more into winter, clean or woody scents then I know Jo Malone, Diptique and Yankee Candle are popular options. I got gifted these for Christmas and my birthday so I have these to hand and their essential oils really help me relax. If you're more of a shower girl, then Loccitane's Shower Oil is a really good one as it's extremely luxurious and moisturising. I like to pop abit of this in my bath without bubbles just to make the water a bit more creamy, I guess. It smells like almonds and loveliness and is brilliant for those with dry skin.

I love using my REN cleanser but I feel like a cleansing balm can feel more relaxing and luxurious. I have this one by Boots Botanics which is pretty natural and feels nice on your face. I would say it leaves more of a residue than my other cleansers though so make sure you wipe it off properly, especially if you're an oily skinned gal like myself.

Once I've got out of the bath, I like to moisturise. I am IN LOVE with The Body Shop's body butters - they are my all time faves! I got this body sorbet for Christmas and it's very cooling so some may find relaxing and some may prefer to use in Summer as a sort of aftersun/moisturiser. This post looks like it's sponsored by The Body Shop but it's actually not! I just love their products as they're so lovely and natural, yet not ridiculously priced.

I then pop on my pj's - these are so soft and are from Primark! I got a couple of sets recently alongside the long bottoms and shorts in matching prints and they're soooo comfortable it's ridiculous. I like to read a book and I'm currently (albeit slowly) reading Paper Towns By John Green; the author who wrote The Fault In Our Stars. I still haven't read that book but really need to! I also like to sit and write in my journal as it's very self reflecting and I will enjoy reading it back this time next year I'm sure.

So there we have a pamper session that I do to relax and to help me beat the January Blues. What do you guys think? Let me know in the comments below :)



Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Beat the January Blues | Being Healthy

Having just passed mid January, I'm sure many of you are feeling the dreaded January Blues. With exams lurking, my life is pretty much revision and the gym so I'm not exactly on top of the world. However, I'm not uber depressed and I feel that I can make myself happy with just the tiniest little things. 
Healthy eating and exercising is essential to keeping your body healthy and happy which in turns makes you happy. Exercising releases endorphins which make us happy and eating healthily makes us feel more energised and less sluggish. I took some photos of my food; a food diary if you like, and after eating a few days like this, I weirdly noticed a dramatic difference in my skin. Anyway, it might give you some ideas of what you can eat to feel healthy and happy so I hope you enjoy. 

For breakfast I tucked into my new porridge by Rude Health. This organic porridge was something I'd never tried before and I would say it tasted pretty boring hence why I added the blueberries and raspberries. They make it even healthier so it's a win win situation! The sunflower and linseeds means this porridge is super natural and is the definition of 'clean eating'.

I then headed to the gym in my new Nike trainers and had a great workout. I had sufficient energy from my breakfast and afterwards, I headed home for lunch...

Avacado is classed as a super food and smoked salmon is an excellent source of fish and omega 3. It helps that I absolutely love them both and especially I love them together. I added some mayonnaise and added them to some bread rolls. I'm aware the white bread rolls aren't really healthy and funnily enough I didn't like them as they were too floury and starchy so I ended up just eating the filling. I recommend putting Smoked Salmon and Avacado on some crispbreads to make it healthier - it's definitely what I'm going to start doing!

For Dinner, I had some Chicken rubbed with Nandos Medium Peri-Peri Rub and fried in Coconut oil. Coconut oil is the healthiest oil out there and tastes amazing! I like this one from Biona Organic as it's raw and smells amazing too! I roasted some aubergine, peppers, onions and sweet potatoes in coconut oil and added Quinoa. Quinoa is a great source of protein and is also a super food. You can cook it in hot water or any kind of broth or stock to make it taste even better.

So there we have a days food diary! I feel eating clean not only makes your body look good, but it also makes you feel good inside and out. I'm thinking of branding my blog as more towards 'Healthy and Beauty' as I am really interested in clean eating and health at the moment and I feel I know quite a lot about it. What do you think?

Lots Of Love,


Friday, 16 January 2015

My Lipstick Collection | alicekatex

If you know me, you would know I'm an avid lip product fan. I love make-up but buying lipsticks is my one true weakness. I have lipsticks, lipglosses, lipstains and lipbalms etc but I'm going to show you my lipsticks in this blog post. I love nosying at people's makeup collections so I hope you enjoy!

I store my make-up in the wide acrylic drawers from Muji and 3 out of 8 drawers are taken up with lip products. But, of course, there still isn't enough room for my lipsticks so my main lipsticks have a place on the top in a lipstick holder I picked up from Amazon. If you search 'Acrylic Lipstick Holder' you're bound to find something similar.

First of all we have my MAC lipsticks...

Hue is a pinky nude lipstick with a hint of brown which is very popular with MAC lipstick lovers. It's a glaze finish so is pretty shiny and radiant looking. Coral Bliss is a coral shade which would be great to wear as an 'everyday' kinda lipstick as you could probably apply without a mirror. It's a creemsheen finish so it goes on really smoothly. Snob is is a unique pinky lavendar-esque shade which I feel is something Kylie Jenner would really love. It's a satin finish but is matte however doesn't dry the lips out at all! Rebel is a very autumnal shade - a dark purple that will probably look great on anyone. Impassioned is an amplified shade which means it goes on the lips very bright (the photo doesn't do it any justice). It's a hot pink shade that would look great on a night out.

My Revlon lipsticks...

I really love Revlon for their lipsticks and think they are very underrated. Pink In The Afternoon is a gorgeous pink shade which is the most wearable lipstick I own. Love That Red was purchased in the Factory Shop for around £2/3 about a year ago so isn't in store anymore. It's a beautiful classic red but not quite sure why it's a 'creme' as it feels very matte to me. Black Cherry is similar to MAC's Rebel and has been spoke about in the blogosphere for a while. It's the same kind of dark purple vampy lipstick that everyday knows and loves to wear in Autumn. Wild Orchid is a new purchase as I was looking for a more deep pink purple kind of shade. It's a pearl finish which you can see from the photo. I probably prefer looking at it in the bullet rather than on my lips though but we'll see once I've had a play around with it.

Here we have a Maybelline Color Sensational lipstick, my first one in the range, in Hot Plum. The photos are doing the lipsticks justice mostly but for this lipstick that is definitely not the case. It is a lot deeper in person. It's a deep light purple with a hint of pink which I'm excited to experiment with. Maxfactor's Mulberry is a berry shade which I almost forgot I had. Finally is my Chanel Rouge Coco Shine lipstick in Parfait which is a natural shine on the lips. It doesn't really give much colour but adds a nice shimmer to the lips and looks pretty in my handbag!

We then delve into my drawer...

Here I have a Jemma Kidd 'Hi Shine Glosstick' which I also found in the Factory Shop. It's a lovely pink shade called 'Hibiscus' that goes on the lips pretty vividly. I basically bought this for the cool packaging - if you click the top down it pops up! Secondly, I have my only Topshop lipstick in 'Infrared' - an orange toned red which is beautiful in Summer! I also have the Rimmel Kate Moss lipstick which doesn't actually have a name but 110 is basically a classic matte red shade. I've seen it raved about but I think it can be quite drying on the lips. I have a Clinique lipstick here but not really sure if beauty is the shade as I got it in one of those free gift sets when you buy 2 Clinique lipsticks. Finally in this segment, we have a Barry M lipstick which I've had for a while and haven't worn for a long time! It's a very bright pink that I haven't been brave enough to sport.

The first 2 of these lipsticks are by ELF in Sociable and Flirtatious. One is a hot pink and the other is a light pink. I also have 3 lipsticks from MUA; 2 of which are by One Direction. Quite cringey but they're actually pretty good! They have creamy formulas and go on the lips really easily. I always forget about this one when I want to go for a red lip but it's actually a really good one. I need to go for the MUA ones a bit more and they're so cheap so you can't go wrong!

Lastly are some lipsticks by Natural Collection. These lipsticks are £1 - it's ridiculous! They're creamy and moisturising and have a lovely range of shades. Yes, they don't last very long but not many do unless you use a stain.

The rest of the drawer is filled with random lip liners, lip bullets, lip stains and other lip products you couldn't class as a lip gloss or lip balm. I absolutely love my Smashbox lip stain as it's a perfect red and is a pen followed by a color seal balm, so the colour stays on for ages!

Hope you enjoyed! Are any of these your favourites?


Monday, 12 January 2015


I aimed to make this a series way back in June but I never really remember to continue with it. I always learn tips and tricks about beauty and would love the share them with you all as this is, after all a beauty blog. Here are 6 tips that you may not already know and that may be useful!

1. Keep hair rollers in for hours to let them cool. If you have naturally straight hair like me, you know making curls stay in your hair is a nightmare. I got told by my hairdresser that you should put hair rollers in hours before you go out to let them cool down whilst in your hair. If you don't have time for that, go outside for a few minutes to let them cool quickly. Taking them out when they're still hot or even just a bit warm means that they won't stay in as long as you'd like them to.

2. Use a chemical exfoliant rather than a 'beady type' exfoliant. Beads will irritate the skin which will cause redness.

3. Wash your skin with luke warm or cold water. Hot water will make your skin hot (obviously) which helps bacteria breed better. Noone wants bacteria on their skin!

4. Experiment with makeup. Do you ever stick to your everyday winged liner and a nude lippy? Well nows the time to experiment! Summer is more of a 'no makeup makeup' kind of affair but Winter is a time where you can go all out with the bright lips. I'm particularly interested in purple toned lipsticks at the moment. I saw Selena Gomez rocking quite a bright purple lip and then another which was a purple toned pink and she looked gorgeous (although when doesn't she!) I'm going to buy one so if you know of any good ones, let me know!

5. Nude eyeliner to open the eyes. Most of you are probably sighing duhhh at this one but for those of you that don't know this, it's a massive life saver especially when you've had a lack of sleep or are beating a horrendous hangover. 

6. Apply concealer in a triangle shape under the eyes. I've heard that this is great when contouring the face and for wakening up the face. This is a trick used by Kim K and she likes to set the concealer with Ben Nyes banana powder - a yellow toned setting powder.

Thanks for reading!

Lots Of Love,


Thursday, 8 January 2015

What I Learnt In 2014

Collage of 2014 L-R: Uni, Spanish Paella, Winter Wonderland, Corrie Tour, Amsterdam, Spain, Drunk in London, Cocktails at uni, Alpaca farm.

2014 was an exciting year for me as I started going out with my boyfriend in January and we've had a great year together going to Amsterdam and Spain. I went to Gran Canaria with my family too which was an amazing holiday. I had my ups and downs as you do and I learnt a lot of life lessons so here we go:

Do not get stressed out about little things. I used to, and still occasionally do, walk around really fast whilst doing everyday tasks even when there's absolutely no need to rush. I'd get stressed out if something doesn't work the first time and shout. I've really tried to hold back, be more patient and not get stressed out about minor things.  

Becoming distant from friends is OK.
As I've gone to university, I've drifted away from many of my school friends who I even went on holiday with. The thing is, many are still close and I kind of just feel really out of it all when I come back home in the holidays. I'd say I don't bother with them and they don't bother with me. I've learnt to realise that everyone moves on and you're rarely still good friends with school friends when you're about 40. I have my uni friends that I'm sure I'll still be friends with after uni and don't get me wrong, I still speak to some people from home. 

You will get a lot of rejections. After applying for numerous internships in finance, HR etc in big companies, I have received a lot of rejections. I'm studying a Mathematics degree at a Russell Group university and have work experience highlighting my skills. Yet I still cannot manage to get past the first application stage in most cases and when I have, I've failed the situational judgement tests. They are multiple choice and very ambiguous but I realise I'm clearly just not right for the roles. I believe that everything happens for a reason and if it is meant to be, it will happen. 

Trusting relationships are the best. Being in a good loving relationship where you 100% trust the other person is one of the best things ever. I'm very happy at the moment and have learnt that trusting someone makes it so much better.

My future is not restricted. This is important for me especially career wise. I can do whatever I want in the future and I don't have to follow specific career paths that people would expect me to. I love blogging about beauty and I also love doing Mathematics so I have a wide variety of options available to me.



Thursday, 1 January 2015

Life Lately | Walking in a Winter Wonderland

Life has been pretty chilled recently and I have really enjoying going for walks in the crisp cold air followed by visiting my boyfriend (I'm still there now). We had a lovely day out in London yesterday shopping on Oxford Street and visiting Winter Wonderland. I thought I would share a few pictures from recently and felt 'Walking in a Winter Wonderland' was a pretty accurate description.

After leaving the pub to what I would call a mild blizzard, I woke up the next morning to snow in my garden.
Me and my mum decided to go on a walk and it was so lovely and refreshing!
The following day, me and my family went on a walk to Roundhay Park in Leeds to experience the 'no cloud in the sky' kind of crisp cool day. It was nice just wondering around the lake however some parts of the park were a bit like a skating ring!

The lake was frozen

The next day I hopped on a train down to my boyfriends house and managed to bag First Class for around £8 extra which was exciting. I had a whole table to myself and made the most of the free food, drinks and wifi. *Picture of the food not included - too busy scoffing*

I was able to experience the beautiful views as darkness fell, especially when flying past Cambridgeshire as it's so flat and you can see for miles. I arrived to a cosy house and had a lovely night just chilling out.

The following day we went into London and spent my giftcards in Topshop and New Look and got some complete bargains! The lights on Oxford Street were stunning; especially outside John Lewis, House Of Fraser and Debenhams. 
 We then walked on to Hyde Park to go to London's famous Winter Wonderland.

We ate german hot dogs and had the yummiest waffles whilst strolling through the market and watching everyone having a good time.
We had a great new year last night except we didn't take any photos so I can't show you all my beautiful new jumpsuit that I purchased in Topshop! Hope you all had a great time and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!


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