- Monday, 21 September 2015 -

Why I Don't Wear Makeup

Hello my lovelies! Growing up a teenager riddled with acne wasn't easy, even more so when you find yourself lacking in sisters to confide in over what concealer to use when breakouts start becoming the bane of your life. My mother didn't wear makeup and with no close cousins to learn from, I took it upon myself and timidly picked up my first jar of Dream Matte Mousse and slathered it over my face in the avid hope of hiding this hideous affliction. My acne was a regular cause for concern as children and grown adults alike would frequently question me of my (non-existent) chicken pox, resulting in my voice cracking and tears forming in my eyes as I told them "it's just my face".

From the tender age of twelve I began experimenting with makeup; every morning awakening at the crack of dawn to begin a meticulous ritual that would rid me of any bumps or blotches. With my newfound skills, I would craft myself a new face, a better face, free from my own self-loathing - this was more than a vanity thing, this was about finding the courage to love myself. I felt powerful spreading my lipstick on in the mornings, ready to take on a new day, my eyeliner so sharp it could cut anyone standing in my way.

Secondary school was like a battleground and I wore my makeup like warpaint. Regardless of the inner war that was waging inside me as I was bullied throughout school, my mascara didn't budge an inch. I was more beautiful than them even if I was breaking inside. Looking back, there was rarely a time where you'd see me without makeup and I find that sad. As the years rolled on and I grew older, I began to realise that people shouldn't love you based on your makeup, that the people you surround yourself with should love you for being you.

So, I took the mask off. It wasn't a speedy process, as more days I'd feel more self conscience than others, but slowly and surely, I simply began to not give a fuck. Understandably, many of you reading this can't imagine going a day without makeup as its part of your routine, it gives you a confidence boost etc and that's okay, but that's not me anymore. I don't wear it going to the shops, I don't wear it to university or work. I feel free and raw and open and I LOVE how I can scratch the shit out of my eyes without the concern of messing up my mascara. For the longest time I was wearing makeup to impress others and satisfy the demon inside me who was picking me apart.

Don't get me wrong though, I still love nothing more than giving myself a good pamper session and slapping on as many layers as possible in preparation for a night out, because I'm only human, right? I still buy makeup regularly for events or special occasions but generally, if you meet me down the street, I will have literally woken up like this (winking eye emoji). Yes, I do savour those precious extra minutes I have in bed more where I could be goin' all MUA on my ass, but for the most part, I'm just happy to finally feel content in my own skin.

- Tuesday, 15 September 2015 -

Cute Paperchase Haul!

Hello my lovelies! So, that time of year has managed to roll around again, with Freshers students flocking the streets and people derivatively rhyming off Green Day lyrics, I couldn't be happier to bid farewell to summer and welcome Autumn with open arms! This September marks my third (and final, eek!) year at university, where I'll not only be preparing my final projects but will also be jetting off to Switzerland for an exciting design collaboration in Zurich. With this academic year already proving pretty hectic, I wanted to kick-start my motivation with an obligatory stationery order, from Paperchase no less!

I could easily spend an eternity trawling through Paperchase, eyes completely captivated by quirky gifts and colourful stationery. As soon as I enter a store, I always find myself gravitating towards the twirling stall that showcases all the stickers, and that's it - I'm lost in time, spinning it endlessly and collecting the cutest I can find. Each year I purchase a selection of stickers to smother my uni notebooks with just to make them that little bit more me!

In keeping with the cat theme I apparently have goin' on, I also snapped up this adorable lined notebook for jotting down ideas, inspirations and everything in between. Decorated with various breeds of cats, I love how colourful the cover is and I actually can't stop awwing at the little kitties in their little outfits! Presented in hardback, this notebook will be perfect at withstanding any bumps and bangs it may retain in my university schoolbag.

Probably my favourite purchase of the lot, this fairy princess writing set is too cute for words! Shaped like a miniature wardrobe and garnished with glitter, it opens up to produce an assortment of beautiful letters, envelopes and even stickers, my eyes practically glistening with excitement at the thought of all the happy mail I'll be sending! Adorned with princesses, unicorns, rainbows and castles, Paperchase have really outdone themselves with this magical set.

No stationery haul would be complete without a brand-spanking new set of pencils! Like a moth to a flame, I was of course drawn to the pencil tin covered in cupcakes, and with 36 dazzling colours to choose from, I can imagine that my new cat notebook will soon be resembling a rainbow. As I take four modules per semester, I like to colour coordinate my notes, making them more fun to interact with and get the creative juices going. Probably one of my cuter hauls from Paperchase, I'm excited to get stuck into my studies and get colourful!