Monday 31 October 2011

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween everybody!

I've just had the most perfect weekend as my boyfriend, who I hadn't seen for 3 weeks and my parents, who I hadn't seen for 6 weeks, all came up to Sheffield to watch me play the Fool in the last night of King Lear. It was so wonderful to see them all and to be part of such a great play (there will be photos of my Fool costume and make up soon!) However, now I'm in the mood to get spooky and party!

My lovely Grandad carved me this delightful pumpkin head and got my Mum to bring it up with her, bless :)
I love Halloween, despite the fact I'm scared of everything from the dark to dolls, as it gives everyone a fabulous excuse to dress up! I'm off to a house party tonight and as I obviously can't show you what I looked like yet, I thought I'd give you a few sneak peaks into what I'm using to turn myself into a scary kitty cat...

I still haven't decided if I'm wearing a black dress or a skirt and top tonight, but my trusty ears, tail and collar combo, that I've had ever since my school did Cats the musical, are the staples of my outfit...

I want to go for a really dark and dramatic look tonight, so I'm going to use lots of my smoky 17 eye shadow palette and I will also be trying false eye lashes for the first time to get the cat eyes I'm after! I went for eylure's intense lash effect and I will let you know how I get on with them tomorrow. I've also purchased some black face paint so I can have a cute nose and whiskers and I'm also considering painting my lips black for a really intense and halloweeny look...

I used one of my trusty No7 boots vouchers again today to purchase another stay perfect nail polish in beautifully black, so I can get some eye catching claws out tonight. My Mum also bought me some cute Halloween nail stickers which I might use, I particularly love the cat and skeleton ones...

So that's my plan for tonight, I'm going to stop blogging now so I can start my lengthy process of getting ready and I will show you how it all looked together tomorrow :)

What are you dressing up as for Halloween? Have you been to or got some great parties to go to?

I hope you have a great night if your out partying or just in waiting for the trick or treaters!
Love Meg
Wednesday 26 October 2011

Getting glossy: Maybelline Colorsensational Cream Gloss in 'Coral Blush'

 Good morning everyone!

Today I thought I'd do a follow on post from my previous post, where I decided to give lipstick a miss for a while and see if I could find some lip glosses that would work better for me and I certainly have with maybelline's colour sensational cream gloss! 

It was a very reasonable price at £6.19 from Boots, which I think will turn out to be great value for money as the tube looks like it will last a very long time. I got it in 415 coral blush, as I wanted a quite casual pinky colour to wear mainly in the day time and I must say I absolutely love it! It's perfect for day time wearing when your on the go, as the pointed sponge applicator means you can put it on easily and evenly in seconds and even without a mirror when you're out and about. 

The main thing I love about this lip gloss is the colour and consistency of the gloss, as it looks exactly the same on your lips as it does in the tube due to it's thick and creamy consistency, whereas some lip glosses can really thin out on your lips and not create much colour at all. 

 You can also easily build up layers of the gloss for a bolder colour or just use one thin application for a more subtle look.

And this is the overall effect of my rosy lipped day time look...

The only negative I do have is that the gloss doesn't really last that long, so if you want it on all day you will have to keep applying it. However I prefer to keep applying or just let it fade away, rather than using long lasting lipstick and glosses that disappear on the inside of your lips when you eat or drink and leave you with that dreaded ring of colour around the outside of your lips. So until I find a product that lasts all day on 100% of my lips, even when your eating and drinking, I'll be sticking to this lip gloss :)

Have any of you tried this product? Do you prefer lipstick or lip gloss? 

I Hope you are all having a lovely week! I'm very excited as I've got the opening night of King Lear tonight- wish me luck!

Love Meg
Friday 21 October 2011

NOTD- Boots Bargain

Hello girlies,

sorry I've been a bit rubbish at posting this week! I'm having a bit of a manic time at the moment as I have King Lear rehearsals every day on top of all my uni stuff, but I'm definitely going to try and keep on top of my posting a bit more from now on...

Every time I spend over £5 at boots (which is pretty much all the time!) I always get given some sort of voucher. I don't know why but I've never really paid any attention to them before and they've all gone in the bin along with the various other rubbish my purse seems to collect. However, the other day I actually looked at what the voucher was for and as it was for £5 off any No7 products and I had some extra time, I thought I'd actually use it then and there.

I don't normally even look at No7 make up, as it's just a bit far out of my student price range, but with a whole £5 off it would have been a crime not to get something! I went straight for the nail varnishes, as I'm trying to expand my collection at the moment and plus they were only normally £7, meaning I'd be paying just £2 for a high quality polish- what an absolute steal!

After much deliberation (I'm terrible at making quick decisions!) I went for stay perfect nail colour in Foxglove, as I only own one light purple nail polish and I wanted a more plum coloured richer shade.

And I absolutely love it! I normally go for Rimmel varnishes, but I think I've been converted as one coat provides complete coverage, the nice thick brush means you can apply a coat with minimal applications and it lives up to it's stay perfect claim, as it was ages till the first chip appeared. £7 would usually be pushing it in terms of my budget for a nail colour, as Models Own is only a fiver from boots, but with these vouchers I can certainly afford to build up a good No7 collection!

Have you been taking advantage of these No7 vouchers? What's your favourite nail varnish collection? 

I hope you've all had a good week!
Love Meg
Monday 17 October 2011

Review- Garnier summerbody moisturising lotion

Hello Lovelies!

As we're in the middle of October now and the season of sun bathing is well and truly over for another year, I thought it was very appropriate to start blogging about my favourite way to keep up your summer tan in the winter months. I'd tried a few different sorts of tanning products before (which I will go into more detail about in future posts) and found I preferred gradual rather than instant products, but had still never found one that gave me the results I wanted and so for a long while hadn't bothered with any sort of fake tanning. However, after coming back from Lanzarote this summer with my boyfriend, I decided I liked my tan so much I wanted to find a good way to keep it up...

Even if you can't see my Lanzarote tan very well in this photo, I thought I'd show you my gorgeous River Island maxi dress anyway :) 
...and I definitely have found that good way in the form of Garnier summerbody moisturising lotion!

My friend Faye, who writes the fabulous, recommended this product to me back at the end of July, so I went out and bought a big 400ml bottle in the 'deep sunkissed look' shade while it was half price in Superdrug and I've been hooked ever since... 

Boots describe it as, 'A moisturising lotion for a sun-kissed look, with natural extract of Apricot. Effective 12 hour moisturisation which gradually builds a tan.' It's available in both light or deep sun kissed looks and it's £5.10 for 250ml or £7.15 for 400ml from Boots.

  • It gives you a really noticeable, yet natural looking sun kissed tan.
  • Because it is a gradual tanning product, you do not get the orange or fake look.
  • It has a more pleasant and less noticeable scent than other gradual tanning products. 
  • The actual lotion has a very nice, light and silky consistency that doesn't make your skin feel too smothered in product.
  •  It is easy to apply and you don't need a tanning mit.
  • It is great value for money, as it really works and I'm still going from the bottle I bought in July.
  • It keeps skin hydrated and moisturised all day, so works as two products in one.
  • If you use too much or forget to wash your hands after using it, it is quite easy to wash off.
  • Because of the subtle build up you don't get obvious uneven or streaky tan lines.
  • Because it is available in two different shades it is easy to match your skin tone.
  • If you apply too much lotion or use it too often your skin can develop quite a strong scent.
  • Over use can result in product build up in certain areas that can cause a slightly uneven looking tan.

I now use it roughly every other day and never put it on without showering first, as when I used it every day and sometimes put it on unshowered skin to try and top up my tan even more, I noticed product and scent build up in certain areas. Apart from that though I'm blown away by this fabulous tanning lotion and I'd definitely give it a 9 out of 10! 

TOP TIPS-  Do remember to wash your hands after using it, particularly in-between your fingers, as I forgot to wash my hands after using it once and it looked like I had a very odd uneven hand colour, but it washed off in about 2 days so it's fine and I haven't forgotten since! 
-I would also suggest that you go for the deep sun kissed look, as I think the light one would be too subtle and you wouldn't notice much of a difference, but saying that I have been using it to sustain quite a deep holiday tan, so I think which shade you go for is quite a personal preference. 

What do you use to give you that sun kissed look all year round? Do you prefer gradual or instant tanning products? Or do you go for the natural paler English rose look?

I hope you've all had lovely weekends!
Love Meg
Saturday 15 October 2011

Hair hair hair...

Good morning!

I'm doing a bright and early post this morning as I have a King Lear rehearsal all day and then I'm going bowling with the rest of the cast, fun times indeed! Anyway...

One of the main things I wanted to blog about when I started my budget boutique was my hair, as I've changed it a lot over the last few years and so have lots of products and advice to share with you. But first I thought it would be helpful to show you my hair timeline and then my future posts will make more sense...
So hair colour wise I started off blonde when I was young and then it darkened to a mousy brown. I started off with uncontrollable bushy Hermione Granger hair, then when I hit 13 it literally went into corkscrew curls over night (The exact same thing happened to my Dad at 13!). I tried out full fringes, side fringes, no fringe, short curls and long curls and never really liked my curls as I thought they made me look really young, all I ever wanted was poker straight hair!

When I was 17 I suddenly decided I'd had enough of my curls and went for the chop after a few people told me I had the face to pull off a really short style. I went for an asymmetrical style at first, which was cut around the ear on one side and chin length on the other, then just decided to get a full on pixie cut. My hair was much easier to straighten and I got ghd's, so I finally got the straight hair I wanted! This summer however, I started getting bored with having such short hair, as I couldn't do much with it and I had to spend lots of money on salon trips to keep it short all the time. Also getting cast as Oliver in one of Sheffield uni's musicals and the fact my boyfriend always had longer hair than me, made me realise that I wanted more feminine hair. So I started to grow it into a Frankie from the Saturday's asymmetrical cut with a side fringe, chin length side and section behind the ear.

I then thought that my hair looked nicer and much more girly when it was a bit longer, so I decided to grow it long again. I also decided I wanted a colour change, as I was fed up with mousy brown and as I've always wanted my sister's natural blonde hair colour, that's what I went for. However, I didn't do much research into how to go blonde from brown and just tried doing it in one step from a packet and it went a little ginger. I also tried growing out my fringe into a Pixie Lott middle parted bob and started to embrace my curls a bit more again. A few weeks later I dyed it blonde again and it lost the ginger and went a lovely icy pale blonde colour that I really loved and was totally happy with.

However, after a few washes however the colour went into more of a yellow blonde which I didn't like as much and I also tried having a side fringe for a while. I then did lots of research into how to get rid of the yellow and brassy tones in dyed blonde hair and after using purple toning products it went back to the icy blonde I wanted. I decided to go back to the Pixie Lott centre parted bob too, as I liked how it framed my face and it was nice not to have to faff about with a fringe any more (plus it meant saving money on trips to get my fringe cut)!

I'll now be doing lots of posts on the dyes I've used, tips on how to grow hair out, all the products I use to stay blonde and keep my hair in good condition and how to avoid the ginger stage of going blonde without paying salon prices!

Any particular questions you may have please feel free to comment on here or email me, as I know I would have liked to have got some advice before starting to change my hair. Please also let me know any advice you may have on being a bottle blonde or growing hair out, particularly on how to avoid ginger roots when you dye your brown roots blonde (I'll elaborate on this dilemma later!).

Have you had lots of hair changes? Any bad hair cut choices or colouring mistakes? Or have you managed to get your hair perfect every time?

Have a good Saturday my lovelies!
Love Meg
Friday 14 October 2011

My Lipstick Boycott!

Good Evening lovely ladies!

Tonight I thought I'd post about the lipstick boycott that I've recently started. Basically I've always worn lipstick on nights out and for the past year or so I've also started wearing it in the day. I never gave much thought to lip gloss, as if I wanted to go for a more casual look I would wear rose tinted Vaseline. However, my Where's Wally night out last Monday got me thinking...

I was wearing Rimmel's lasting finish lipstick in 175 signature red to match the red and white theme...

I do love the vibrant colour and it does look great when you first apply it (plus it's good value for money!), but the problem is as soon as you eat something or have a drink it certainly doesn't live up to it's lasting finish claim, as some of the lipstick rubs away and your left with an awful looking ring of red around the outer bit of your lips! After having to top up my lipstick after every drink, I decided I was going to boycott lipstick for the time being and see if I could find lip glosses that would be less hassle, but give me the same great vibrant colour and a long lasting finish. I'm also very interested in trying out liptint as an alternative option, as by the sounds of it the colour really doesn't rub off, have any of you tried it? In particular, has anyone tried the new Max Factor Lipfinity Liptint? It looks amazing, but doesn't come in red so I'd have to get it in more casual pink and nude shades.

Do you have the same problem with lipstick? Or have found any long lasting ones that really work? Do you also have any lip glosses you think I should try? 

Hope you've all had a fab start to your weekends!
Love Meg
Thursday 13 October 2011

OOTD- Where the hell is Wally?

Hello Lovelies!

When you're a student finding fancy dress outfits is almost as important as finding regular outfits and it's always good to find them on a budget (particularly as you'll probably only end up wearing them once or twice!). With this in mind I thought I'd show you what I wore last Monday night. It was our first Guys and Dolls clubbing social and as I'm one of the social secretaries for Sheffield University Performing Arts Society (I'll call it SUPAS from now on...) it was down to me to choose a theme. I instantly went for 'where's wally?' as I thought it was easy, fun, not too daunting for the freshers and could easily be done for a budget...and I was right as everyone loved the theme and I only spent a grand total of £2 on my costume- bargain!

Top- Borrowed from a friend
Shorts- Topshop
Socks- Primark
Brogues- ASDA
Hat- Primark
Glasses- Fancy dress shop
You probably know by now that I'm the one second from the left with the blonde bob...but how gorgeous do my girls look even dressed as wallys! Anyway I basically I wanted to save lots of money by using things I already had, so I wore my high waisted navy Topshop shorts, white Primark ankle socks and ASDA brogues on my bottom half. The blue shorts were in keeping with the theme and defined my figure and I thought the ankle sock and brogue combination gave the outfit a cutsie look. I also already had the glasses, because I bought them to dress up as a geek last year and they've turned out to be a very good investment.
TOP TIP- If you ever need cheap chunky black framed glasses to be a school girl, geek or wally, then just pop the lenses out of cinema 3D glasses, lots of people did it for the social and it worked a treat.

I was actually lacking the main ingredient- a red and white stripey top, but after scouring the whole of Sheffield high street in search of a cheap one and only finding a £20 one in Topshop, I decided just to ask my friends and the first person I asked happened to have one. So if in doubt just ask around and someone is bound to have what you want!

I fancied adding a few extra wallyish touches, so I painted my nails alternately with Rimmel's I love lasting finish in 030 double decker red and natural collection's nail tip whitener. I thought it looked pretty effective and on a side note, both these nail polishes are super cheap and really good quality for what you pay.

Me and my friends, Emily and Cath, also really wanted where's wally bobble hats so we bought £2 Primark white chunky knit hats (which are an absolute steal as I would definitely wear them in the Winter) and then made red pom poms and sowed them on top. It's very easy to make pom poms, I can still remember how to do it from my Brownie days and I'd be happy to do a post on it if anyone wants to know how to make them.

So there you have it, a new fancy dress outfit for just £2! Some of my other friends had very thrifty ideas too that I think looked really effective...

Can you see what we were trying to do here?
Will, who is on the end, wrapped black tape around his yellow top to be the bad guy, Nick wore his dressing gown to be the wizard (lol) and Josh wrapped white tape around his red top and fashioned a hat out of boxers wrapped in white tape (another lol) to be the dog.

I also thought my friend Emily did some very cute nail art...

And even though my friend Amy certainly wasn't creating her outfit on a budget by wearing these Kurt Geiger shoes, they were so beautiful I thought you might just want to look at them...

Have you ever dressed up for a where's wally themed event? Or have you managed to create some other good budget fancy dress costumes?

Hope you have a fabulous night!
Love Meg
Wednesday 12 October 2011

My first blog award!

I was given this award by It is awarded to those with under 200 followers by people who appreciate their blog and it helps others to connect with them.

I was so thrilled to receive this award as I've only been blogging for about a month and to get recognition from such a great blogger like Angie is a lovely feeling and it really gives me the motivation to continue growing my budget boutique!

I now need to pass on the award to 5 other blogs that I love with under 200 followers and here they are-

2. (I'm cheating a little with this one as she has 204 followers, but it's such a good blog and it's only 4 over after all!) 

Please remember to:
- Post this on your blog.
- Choose five bloggers you want to give it to & comment on a post letting them know you have chosen them.
- Show thanks to the person who gave you the award by linking it back to them.

The blogs I've passed the award onto and Angie's blog are all amazing so definitely check them out and add them to your reading list!

Hope you all have a lovely Wednesday!
Love Meg
Sunday 9 October 2011

Budget Boutique Broadcast!

Good evening everybody! I've been at rehearsal for Guys and Dolls all day and now me and my house mates are about to have a roast dinner so this is just going to be a really quick post...

 Basically I'm going to be on a radio show tonight if you fancy tuning in! It's a lovely American lady's radio show, she's called Cat and is a fellow blogger and one of my followers. She has asked me to go on her show to talk about my little budget boutique. It's on at 8 'o' clock tonight and you can listen online, the link to her blog and the show is below- 

And even if you can't listen tonight why not check out Cat's blog and audio blogs, they are different to our fashion and beauty ones, but I find them really interesting and enjoyable!

I'd love it if I had a few of you listening so pretty please tune in if you can and I'll get back to actual budget beauty blogging tomorrow...

I hope you all have lovely relaxing Sunday evenings!
Love Meg
Friday 7 October 2011

NOTD- Mix and Match

Hello again my lovelies!

 Sorry I've been absent for the past week, I'm a very busy bee at the moment as I've just been cast as Adelaide and the Fool in uni productions of Guys and Dolls and King Lear, so I've had lots of rehearsing to do! I've also just got back from spending a few days in London visiting my boyfriend which were lovely...but anyway time to get back on top of my blogging now...

I'm quite OCD about having my toe nails and finger nails painted the same colour, so I found it rather tragic the other day when I didn't have time to re do both! This meant I had to leave my toe nails in their leopard print state, while I painted my finger nails with Rimmel 60 seconds 415 instyle coral...

This coral has to be my most favourite nail colour ever, I got it earlier in the summer and have worn it so much since, as it's girly in a less obvious way than bright pink and goes with any outfit.      

The Rimmel 60 seconds range is my favourite nail polish collection too, as I love how the thick brush really does give you, if not 1 second, then very quick and precise application without the brush stroke marks you can get when using a thinner applicator brush. I have also found that the colours give one coat complete coverage and a finish that lasts a long time, whilst the bottle also lasts a long time considering the £3.69 price tag.

And after taking this picture I've now decided I quite like the funky mix and match effect of having different nail colours going on at the same time... maybe now I'll stretch to painting my actual finger nails different colours too, I've always wanted to try out ombre effect nails, but I don't think I have 5 polishes in similar shades!

What do you think about having toe nails and finger nails different colours? Are you a person that loves using lots of different colours when painting nails? Or do you like to stick with the classic one colour?

Hope you've had a good week!
Love Meg
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