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Tuesday 27 February 2018

Recently Read: January

Man, did I read some truly excellent books last month. I have a thing about the first book of the year that I read- it has to be good, otherwise I feel like it's a bad reading omen for the year. It's probably nonsense but it fills me with great joy when I read a brilliant book in the first few cold days of January!

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman
And here it is, the excellent first read of 2018. This is what the 90's film of the same name, starring Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman was based on. I also loved that film and kind of jumped at the chance to read the book when it popped up on my Borrowbox (library ebook/audiobook app). Gillian and Sally have had an unusual upbringing. Their parents deaths left them orphans in the care of their two elderly, unconventional aunts. The other kids bullied them for being weird and the rumours of witchcraft followed them around everywhere they went. They're both desperate to escape this life and as soon as they're old enough they do just that- one of them runs away and lives a very wild life, while the other settles down and marries. It looks like they may never see each other again, until dark forces (and let's face it, a bit of magic) brings the sisters back together again. I really loved this book. The descriptions are beautiful; it's romantic and witty, dramatic and fantastical and it flows along wonderfully. Hoffman has a very unique style of writing that I haven't come across before. I've already checked out the sequel, The Rules of Magic from the library and I cannot wait to start it!

The Mother of All Questions by Rebecca Solnit
I've mentioned before my love for feminist author Rebecca Solnit (HERE) and after buying Men Explain Things To Me while in Boston, I had to get The Mother Of All Questions when I saw it in a San Franciscan book store. This is actually the third in this series, so it looks like I'll need another stateside trip to get the second one and complete the tradition! This is a collection of essays with feminism at their core and with the central theme being "the mother of all questions", i.e if you have children, if you don't, why not and are you selfish for not having them? Questions Solnit and many women are all too familiar with. I really enjoyed this, I couldn't put it down and I found her discussions on misogynistic violence, women who refuse to be silenced, the gender binary, rape jokes and the fragile masculinity of some of the "great male authors" were incredibly insightful and well thought out. Several times I found myself reading a section aloud to Himself. Loved it. 

Fierce Kingdom by Gin Phillips
I read about this book last year and the premise; a mother with her son on a day trip to the zoo, forced to fight for their survival when they come under attack, left me so intrigued that I had to get it! I listened to this one, again on my Borrowbox app (honestly, save yisserselves a fortune and get a library card lads). It starts out pretty innocuously, Jane is in the play area of the park with her young son and becomes aware of how late it's getting. She starts to gather him and his toys up, hurrying hm along to the exists when she hears some loud noises, confused as it's too early in the year for fireworks. When she finally realises what it is- a terrorist group have taken over the zoo and are shooting everyone in sight, Jane's adrenaline kicks in and she has to use all her strength to keep her and her son safe, outwitting the killers. This was an interesting take on the thriller genre, considering most of what's around at the minute is very much your domestic noir, this was refreshingly different but at the same time, relevant to the society we live in where these sorts of attacks are becoming more and more commonplace, particularly in America. 

Little Deaths by Emma Flint
This was another Borrowbox read and this is not an ad for Borrowbox, I swear! Set in an oppressively tight-knit working class community in Brooklyn in 1965, Ruth Malone is a single mother of two, working as a cocktail waitress at night and seeing different men in her spare time. She wakes one day to discover that her two children are gone- missing from their beds. No one saw anything but because of Ruth's unconventional lifestyle for the time, all fingers immediately point to her. The police decide she did it and nothing can change their minds. Meanwhile, a young journalist becomes obsessed with the case and with the beautiful and tragic Ruth. Did Ruth kill her children or is she a victim of misogyny and the public court of opinion? I was astounded by this book- I felt at times like I couldn't read on but then I was so gripped by Ruth and her plight that I had to. It's really beautifully written and so evocative of the time. It made me feel angry and sad and devastated, all at the same time. I both highly recommend this book and advise caution; if you have children or you're of a particularly sensitive disposition lately, I would avoid!

Killman Creek by Rachel Caine
This is the sequel to Stillhouse Lake, a thriller I read last year and loved. This was provided for review, so thank you to NetGalley for that! Gwen Proctor is living a secret life. She used to be Gina Royal, wife and mother of two until her husband was revealed to be a prolific serial killer. She had to change her name and those of her children, bringing them on the run, moving at a minutes notice, if it looked like the internet trolls who stalked them had found their whereabouts. In the first book the family had managed to find peace at Stillhouse Lake; that is until the bodies of young women began to turn up nearby, murdered in the same gruesome method as Gwen's ex husband was known for. While that turned out to not be the work of Gwen's ex, he did escape his prison cell at the end of the first book and so now Killman Creek is about their survival again; can Gwen track him down and kill him before he finds her? I love Gwen's character; she's strong and resilient but human too. As her close knit support circle begins to dwindle she has only herself to rely on and she has to find the strength to keep going, even in the face of utter horror. It's unusual to find a female protagonist like this and I'm really hoping there'll be a third book!

Women & Power A Manifesto by Mary Beard
This was a super quick read- just two short essays from professor of classics and feminist Mary Beard. Sick of the online misogynist trolls, Beard decides to examine the origins of this behaviour and finds that it traces right back to Ancient Greece. Here, she dips in to the classics to compare the treatment of women in Homer's Odyssey and works or art to how Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren and other prominent women are treated in society today. Beard also reflects on her own experiences of sexist abuse online, examining the power structure between men and women. I found this to be a really interesting read and focused on an area of feminism I hadn't concerned before. 

And that's the lot for the minute. I'll have February's books up soon but until then, have you read any of these? What are you reading right now?

Monday 12 February 2018

Come, Look At My Trash #7

Alright, these have been building up for a while now and everyone loves a good empties post, so here we go. I'm gonna empty out my box of beauty trash and let you know what I loved, what I didn't and what I would buy again. It's one of my personal favourite types of blog posts actually cause it's almost the best type of review- you liked something enough to use it up and now you can properly give its pros and cons! Yay!

Make Up:

YSL Le Effet Faux Cils Shocking Mascara x3. Yeah...I really like this mascara, clearly. I usually pick up a double pack when I pass through duty free cause it's better value. This mascara is just high drama, no fallout, pitch black. I haven't found its match and I've tried a lot of mascaras! Do you even need to ask? I've another waiting to go!

Speaking of! Bourjois Mascara Effet Push Up Volume Glamour*. This was a good little mascara actually. Not quite on a par with my all time fave but a good, cheaper option. Would buy again.

Benefit's They're Real Macara. This is a mini that I got in a set. I've never been a huge fan of this mascara, I don't like the hard plastic bristles. I do love mini mascara though, so handy and adorable!

Bourjois Brow Design Mascara*. This is in a brown shade that might have been slightly too dark for me, but I liked the formula and how thin the brush is, which is important for a brow product like this. Would buy again!

Flower That's So Kohl Brown eyeliner. I freakin loved this!! This is Drew Barrymore's make up brand. I annoyingly bought only one of these and it's brilliant. It's a thick kohl pencil that smudges really well with the sponge at the other end. I couldn't find this brand when we were in the states again last November, and I was raging!

Maybelline Master Prime by Face Studio Blur & Illuminate. I really liked this primer. It provided a nice, glowy base, good for dry skin. It also has an spf of 30. I got this in the states, not sure if they have this one here but even if they do I have two or three other primers to use up first!

Revlon double ended eye cream. Again, an American purchase. On one end is a beautiful taupey silk shimmery shade that I used every last drop of. On the other is a matching glitter cream, which I liked but just didn't use. I'm kind of past the all out glitter shadow look at this stage to be honest. I would buy again but I'd love to just get that one shade on its own!

Maybelline Anti-Age Eraser Eye conceleaer. This is probably my third one of these. It has a little sponge at the top, you twist and then pat it on under your eye. This is a great concealer. I've already got another one on the go!

NYX Concealer. All of the packaging has come off of this so I'm not sure what the actual name of this is but it was grand. I didn't love it and I didn't hate it. I probably wouldn't buy it again.

YSL Le Teint Touche Eclat Foundation. Love this. Probably my second or third bottle but they have changed the formula, so I'm not sure about getting another one..

Bourjois City Radiance Foundation. This is a really light weight foundation, more like a BB cream than anything. I like it though, it's nice for days where you don't want that much coverage but you still want a little summin' summin'. I have a new one ready to go!

And my most impressive beauty empty of all time is the Chanel Soleil Tan de Chanel Bronze Universel. So this took maybe three years for me to use up. it didn't go off and stayed perfect that entire time. I often used this as a make up base to give an extra healthy glow and sometimes I blended it out as a bronzer over foundation. It's a good product but I got sick of using it if I'm perfectly honest! I would buy it again but I might leave it a while!

Shower & Hair:

Korres Almond & Cherry shower gel. I got this plus the body lotion further down in here on offer last January from Debenhams. This smells beautiful and lathers well. Korres are one of my fave brands- they use mostly natural ingredients, are cruelty free and can be hard to find here which gives them a nice elusive quality ;) Would buy again.

Soap & Glory Sugar Crush Body Scrub. Sweet baba Jay, the smell of this. I could eat it, honestly! And I would too except that I always stop myself in time (I jest). Anyway, this is an excellent body scrub. When I'm prepping for tan, I use it dry first, then hop in the shower, add water and scrub some more. It's good. Would def buy again.

Kevin Murphy Angel Rinse & Angel Shine. I love this range. it's great for damaged hair, which mine is. I've gone through a few of these and although they're pricey, I'd definitely buy them again. They work.


Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water. They sell these smaller sizes right by the counter in Penneys and I get suckered into buying them every time. This is grand. It's a micellar water like, they're really just for removing the top layer of your make up before you go in with a proper oil cleanser to do your second cleanse. Or you know, when you're too tired to get out of bed and the bottle is right there. I probably will end up getting this again for handiness sake if nothing else.

Korres Almond & Cherry Body Milk. This is the partner to the shower gel above. This was gorgeous too. Keep an eye on Debenhams sale online for the Christmas sets like this. I got the two of these for about €11, if memory serves correctly. I'd absolutely get this again.

Aveeno Skin Relief Cooling Menthol Moisturising Lotion. I think I got this on special offer where it was half price in some random pharmacy so I said I'd give it a go. I found this great for the drier skin on my legs. It's not the most luxurious of body creams- I use them on my arms and chest to get the most out of them and this is very much just for legs, elbows, knees, other dry patches etc. I have a new one ready to go!

Burt's Bees Ultimate Care Body Lotion with Baobab Oil for Very Dry Skin. I bought this in New Orleans the October before last and every time I smelt this since, it reminded me of our very cool Airbnb apartment, beads, gators and being both very warm and very drunk. Great times. It's also brilliant for dry skin- super moisturising. They didn't have this exact one the last time I was in the states (I can never find this exact product in Ireland either) so I bought a different scent for dry skin, hopefully it'll be as good!

Crabtree & Evelyn Avocado, Olive & Basil Body Butter. Oh, I loved this. It's so moisturising and sinks in so well but it also smells just like Summer. It's gorgeous. I definitely want more of this in my life.

Ren Express Make Up Remover*. This was a nice milk cleanser. It did the job well but I suppose it was nothing special. I wouldn't be against using it again but I wouldn't actively seek it out again.

Korres Wild Rose Brightening & Line Smoothing Serum. I bought this in Greece because the Korres products are way better value over there. I used this every morning, under my moisturiser and it was an absolute joy. My skin felt soft and comforted plus you can't beat a shot of vitamin C to your skin! It also smells really good (are you sensing an olfactory pattern here?) And yes, I want more!!

Nivea Double Effect Eye Make Up Remover*. This is one of those half oil, half water yokes that you shake up before applying onto a cotton pad. If I'm wearing a lot of eye make up/heavy mascara, I hold the cotton pad over my eyelid for a few seconds and it desolves the worst of it. This is a really good, non-stingy and non-costly option. I already have a new one on the go!

Fresh black Tea Firming Overnight Mask. I've actually been using this since I bought it in New York two years ago. It took that long to finish, and not because I didn't love it (because I did) but because a little goes a long way. I'm also big into overnight masks and the smell of tea so this was a win-win for me. Who knows whether it actually firmed my face or not but I will say that it is intensely moisturising. My face always felt softer and less parched the morning after using it. I'd definitely buy it again but it costs $60 so I'm using up everything else I have first!!

Rituals Magic Touch Body Cream Ritual of Sakura Organic Rice Milk & Cherry Blossom. Another beautifully scented body lotion. I also found this one to be really good for dry skin and I would 100% buy it again. It feels very luxurious when it's applied.

The Body Shop Vanilla Chai Body Butter*. I brought this to California as it's such a handy size, so now yet again the smell of this will always remind me of that trip. This is from a limited edition Christmas range that comes out every year- I'll definitely get it next Winter because it's a great moisturiser, smells sweet but with a gorgeous hit of spice from the cinnamon to warm it up.

Botanics Hydration Burst Hydrating Day Cream*. This was really more of a very light gel and while it did the job in the warmer months, I really need a thicker moisturiser throughout the colder parts of the year (so that's September through to March, then. Thanks, Irish weather). I probably wouldn't buy it again for that reason.

The Body Shop Vanilla Chai Body Butter*. I brought this to California as it's such a handy size, so now yet again the smell of this will always remind me of that trip. This is from a limited edition Christmas range that comes out every year- I'll definitely get it next Winter because it's a great moisturiser, smells sweet but with a gorgeous hit of spice from the cinnamon to warm it up.

Lancome Renergie Multi Lift Cream. This is quite a thick, heavily scented cream. It says it's for all skin types but if you have sensitive skin, I'd probably avoid it to be honest. It does have an SPF of 15 which is good but I wouldn't buy it again, I felt like it needed a lot of work to move it around my face and the smell is a bit overpowering.

Kinvara Rosehip Face Serum. I really liked this, it did feel quite intensive on the skin but I didn't run into any problems like some people with more sensitive skin have reported with it. I probably wouldn't get this again, purely because I've used serum I've preferred more since.

Nuxe Reve de Miel Lip balm. One of my all time faves. This is probably my fourth tub. I'll absolutely buy it again!

The Body Shop Camomile Gentle Eye Make Up Remover. Not such a big fan of this one. It actually stung my eyes, which is strange for a gentle eye make up remover. That might just be me. Anyway, this then leaked all over my toiletry bag so it finished itself off in the end. Wouldn't buy again.

The Body Shop Vitamin E Night Cream. I liked this one, it's thick enough that it feels like you're giving yourself a nice nighttime face mask. I much preferred this to its day cream counterpart. I'd get this one again.

Clarins HydraQuench Cream. Not a huge fan of this, again it has a very overpowering perfumed scent that feels a bit smothering on. Won't be getting it again.

Emma Hardie Moringa Cleansing Balm. I'm obsessed with this stuff. It's the best cleanser I've ever used- you apply it to dry skin, add some water to emulsify and the oil/balm melts your make up and cleans it all away with a warm muslin cloth. I love the smell. Love it!! I've another mini one on the go but I'm getting a full size as soon as that's finished (treat yo'self etc), even if it is horribly expensive! Eep.

Korres Damask Rose Overnight Mask for fatigued skin. God knows I need this! As I've mentioned, I loved the overnight masks, this was lovely. Possibly a little greasy so I probably wouldn't get it again.

The Body Shop Oils of Life Sleeping Cream. I loved this!!! It felt so luxurious, especially when used with the Oils of life facial Oil. Would buy both of these again, for sure.

M&S Beauty Formula Absolute Ultimate Sleep Cream. This promises it'll make you look like you've had 8 hours sleep..I'm not sure if that's true but I know I really liked this and I'd buy a full size!

Josie Maran 100% Argan Oil light. This is a really gorgeous facial oil- it sinks in really well but provides the same nourishment as a heavier oil might. I got this in the states and I'd definitely get a new one the next time I'm back!


Cocoa Brown Instant Tan Bronzing Gel Shimmer. I'm a big fan of instant wash off tan, always have been. Back in the day I was all about the Rimmel Sun Shimmer. I liked this one, there was no streaking, easy to apply, nice glow. I would get it again but I'm currently using a really good one from  St. Moriz.

ChloƩ Love Story Eau de Parfum. This is my second bottle of this that I've gone through. I love this perfume, possibly more than the original ChloƩ. This is a delicate floral but not overly sweet- it has a powdery feel to it too and it lasts really well on the skin. Love it, would love more of it!

Phew! That was quite a lot; probably a years worth of beauty trash! Are any of these your favourites too?

*Denotes that the product was provided for review but this is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own, as always.

Wednesday 7 February 2018

Recently Read: October, November & December

Don't be put off by the amount of months there, I slowed down a bit towards the end of the year so there's not as many books here as I'd like, plus I will make a concerted effort to be more brief than usual! My plan for the year ahead is to read 70 books. I'm 9 in. I can do this! 

*book reading montage*

Nasty Women by Ink 404
This is a collection of essays written by women from different backgrounds, ethnicity's, sexual orientations, educations, etc. about being a woman in the 21st century when intolerance, misogyny and political turmoil seem to be on the rise. The name refers to the now infamous quote from Trump, referring to Hillary Clinton, which has become a badge of honour for some women in the states. I really enjoyed reading this, the different perspectives on a variety of topics kept it fresh and interesting and I kept wanting to read on to the next essay, regardless of how tired I was at the time!

The Other Girl by Erica Spindler
Miranda Rader is a detective and a good one at that. Her kidnapping and attempted rape as a teenager, left her determined to make something of herself and put her into a position of authority where she can help other women. No one believed her when she was a teenager, about her own attack or about the girl who was taken with her and who was never found. Miranda has for the most part put this behind her, that is until she and her partner are called to a murder scene where the victim had a newspaper clipping detailing Miranda's kidnapping. He has been brutally murdered and by his injuries, it looks like a woman could be the perpetrator. Then Miranda's prints are found at the scene and things start to look very bad for her indeed. This is a great little thriller that kept me guessing thanks to a few twists and turns and the odd red herring thrown in for good measure! I really liked Miranda's character and the love story/steamy sex scenes didn't do any harm either!

The Betrayals by Fiona Neill
This was a book club read and not well liked by any of us if I recall correctly. The story is told from several different perspectives, giving it an uneven, jumpy quality. None of them are reliable narrators by the way, so you spend the entire book wondering what really happened. Anyway, Rosie and Lisa used to be best friends. They shared everything, went on holidays together and their children were best friends too. That is until Lisa betrayed Rosie. After years of silence, Rosie receives a letter from Lisa, exposing long held secrets and asking for help. The letter will cause Rosie's family to unravel even further. Nothing really happens in this book. You're lead to believe the whole way through that there's going to be some dramatic reveal but there really isn't. It felt a bit dragged out to me and the content doesn't match how it was marketed- it looks like and the blurb reads like a domestic noir thriller (that are all the rage at the minute) but don't be fooled- it's not. It moves along at a snails pace. On the plus side, there is a very realistic portrayal of OCD in there that I haven't seen as well written in any other novel. Overall though, I'd avoid. 

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
I featured this in my top 5 books of the year (HERE). It was another book club read but much more successful this time. Elena Richardson is a journalist and mother of four, living in an affluent suburb of Cleveland. She is wealthy, successful and respected in her town, which she thinks is down to playing by the rules, something she's prided herself on her entire life. That all gets shaken up when free-spirited artist Mia and her teenage daughter Pearl move to the area; Elena's four children immediately becoming obsessed with them both, which makes Elena uneasy and envious. A local adoption involving Elena's best friend turns into a vicious custody battle that makes enemies of Elena and Mia and Elena decides to use her journalistic skills to uncover secrets about Mia's former life in an effort to destroy her. 
I've had a few people say they started this (on my recommendation..eep!) but found it quite slow moving. It is a slow burner, for sure, but it's beautifully written and atmospheric. The characters feel like real, flawed humans and I could understand their motives, even when they did terrible things. If you're looking for a quick, easy read, this isn't it but stick with it, it's gratifying in the end. Promise!

Recipes For A Nervous Breakdown by Sophie White
This is part memoir, part self-help book, part recipe book. I enjoyed all the parts. Sophie White was a regular gal, living a regular life until she took a tablet at a festival which led to the worst trip of her life and a knock on effect of debilitating mental illness for the next few years. The book covers that time but also her recovery, how she met her husband, their travels together and how she became a chef. The recipes throughout coincide with these times in her life, along with "meals to eat when..." you're pregnant, hungover, in love etc. I loved this book. It gave me so many recipe ideas, beautiful food photos to look at, good life advice and overall an interesting life story to read. 

Under The Dome by Stephen King
This is your classic King; small town Americana full of good and bad people who must face an un-fightable force of evil in order to survive..if the bad guys don't kill all the good guys along the way first, that is. A clear barrier descends over a small town, landing directly on the town borders. Nothing can pass in or out without annihilation and it cannot be destroyed. The longer it's there, the worse the oxygen levels become and the more likely it is that the town's resident mini dictator/murderer will destroy all the townsfolk. This was so gripping and as with all King books you get completely engrossed and attached to the characters. So many times I got annoyed and could be heard exclaiming "WHY? WHY HIM?!" etc. It's long, so you really have to like your King to take this one on- it's not his best but that's a pretty high bar anyway. I enjoyed muchly. 

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena
This is one of the bigger bestselling thrillers from last year. It seemed at one point like everyone was reading The Couple Next Door. Two couples are at a dinner party, one of the couples have a baby daughter who they've left unattended in their home next door, with the baby monitor on. They check on her every half an hour. When they at last leave the dinner party it's been an hour since they checked on her and to their horror, find she's not in her cot- she's been kidnapped. No one is beyond suspicion; the couple themselves, their neighbours, their family etc and the book is really just about figuring out who took her and why. There's a few twists and turns and overall it's a really quick and entertaining thriller, without a huge amount of substance. 

This Is Going To Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor by Adam Kay
Adam Kay is a comedian that originally trained to be a doctor and got quite far too until a tragic event at work made him completely change careers. This is his account of being a junior doctor in the NHS; from the very bottom of the rung; med student and intern, right up to senior house officer and registrar. Health care professionals LOVE telling you all of their weirdest and most wonderful hospital stories. I should know, I'm a nurse and a midwife and I'm married to a doctor. We regularly try and out-do each other with our work stories (no names mentioned, obviously. All very confidential) because that's what doctors and nurses do to relieve the stress we feel from the responsibility our jobs demand from us.
Adam is no different here and for the most part this is a funny read. At the heart of it though, is an expose of just how hard junior doctors work. They miss family events, can't maintain a relationship, work 24 hour shifts, sleep at work instead of going home cause sometimes it's easier and that's all before you add in the abuse from the public and the constant fear that they may make a mistake due to sheer exhaustion. I really enjoyed reading this because it all rang so true for me. I've experienced a lot of what Adam mentions (although I still think most of my hospital stories are better) and I would highly recommend everyone reads this, health care professional or not. It's an eye opener for most people but also, it's really very entertaining. I laughed, I winced and I cried loud, gulpy sobs. 

Why I'm No Longer Talking To White People About Race by Reni Eddo-Lodge
Reni Eddo-Lodge originally wrote an essay with the same name, which garnered so much interest she was asked to expand on the topic and write a novel, and here it is. The first quarter of the book explores the origins of racism in the UK and what role it currently plays in modern Britain. Here, she discusses whitewashed feminism, the connection between class and race and her suggestions for how we can acknowledge and counter racism when it occurs. This is a huge issue right now with modern feminism branching off between intersectionality and those who well, don't understand the actual meaning of feminism I guess?! I enjoy reading and learning as much as I can about feminism and how I can practice intersectional feminism and be a more inclusive and supportive feminist while acknowledging my own privilege, and I found this was a really astute perspective that would be helpful to most feminists.

What Happened by Hillary Rodham Clinton
I mean, we all want to know the answer to that one, am I right?? Hillary taking the blame squarely for it herself in this book about her run and subsequent loss of the US presidency. Also to blame of course are misogyny, sexism, the Russians, those damn emails, the head of the FBI, a feeling amongst Americans that there needed to be a change in the status quo and the inexplicable popularity of Donald Trump. I'm not a blind follower of Clinton, I'm well aware of mistakes she has made throughout her 30 year career in politics (I still can't reconcile the fact that a woman with 30 years experience in the job lost to a male reality TV show host), which she also addresses in this book. She holds her hands up and admits to things she would not do the same if she had a second chance. But she also makes the valid point that male politicians regularly make huge errors of judgement that effect millions and their careers aren't tarnished forever more. For me, this book provided a lot of food for thought. I had been following the US election so I was interested anyway but I also think hearing from the first major female presidential nominee after her defeat is an interesting read! I listened to this on audible cause HRC reads it herself so it fees more authentic that way, even though she can be a little stiff sometimes in her delivery. There's a lot of political discussion in here- what she planned to do if she had won etc. that isn't particularly fascinating but overall I enjoyed it and felt like I learnt a lot more about her as a person- and she is an interesting woman. If you're interested in politics and feminism and how those two coincide then you'll enjoy this too. 

Mindhunter; Inside The FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit by John E. Douglas
This is the book that the recent Netflix series Mindhunter was based on. There's some minor changes between the two but it's the same basic gist. I feel like I learnt more about the life of John Douglas (the main character in the show) from reading this and there's definitely far much more detail on the crimes featured in the series in here, as well as plenty of crimes that aren't (season 2 anyone?). There's also a lot more information about profiling itself, which I find compelling. Overall, an insightful read that kept me captivated, once I got past the first few chapters (those were a little slow). If you like True Crime, this is a good'un. 

OK, I lied, I was not brief but it's hard not to gush about books! 
Tell me, have you read any of these? What are you currently reading?

Sunday 4 February 2018

Clarins SOS Primers | New Release!

One of the nicest things about the new year is all the lovely Spring beauty releases.
Pastel nail polish, floral notes in perfumes and peachy lip shades all make a reappearance and it starts to feel like there might just be an end in sight to the misery of Winter.
I've been lucky enough to try out one such lovely new release; the SOS Primers from Clarins. You will by now have heard of these if you're a beauty fiend. They've been all over Instagram and I'm mostly talking about my own instastories there- I love this primer!

Clarins SOS Primers

A quick description of these fellas: there's six in the range with each one taking care of a different skin issue. I have two to try out; Universal Light to boost radiance for dull skin, and Lavender for brightening sallow skin
Also in the range is Rose, which minimises signs of fatigue (I kinda feel like I could do with this one too if I'm honest!), Peach, which blurs imperfections for a flawless finish, Coral, which minimises dark spots and Green, which diminishes redness (a good one for anyone dealing with Rosacea).

So as well as doing what primers are meant to do, i.e provide a good base for your foundation, they have the added bonus of tackling whatever skin issue you've been struggling with.
Thus, killing two birds with the one, smoothing stone. Hurrah!

Clarins SOS Primers

I've been using Universal Light for the last three weeks. I wear it under Isadora's Cover Up Foundation & Concealer. That particular product is medium to full coverage, which I don't normally wear thanks to my dry skin but, if you add it to an illuminating primer you balance the two out perfectly. I liked that foundation anyway but I love it with this primer. Rarely does a day go by when I wear the two together that I don't get complimented on my face, which is always enjoyable! :D

Clarins SOS Primers

I've tried out Lavender and can see the pigments in it, clearly, but as I don't have sallow skin, I'm not the best person to trial it! It has the same consistency though, which is a wonderful base for your foundation- leaving you with a smooth and prepped surface that'll help your make up last longer. 

It's a good'un.
The SOS Primers are available now and are €31 each.